The Kurdish-led ‘Syrian Democratic Forces’ (SDF) were unable to yield any gains against the Islamic State’s forces in the northern Raqqa countryside on Monday, following the otherwise rapid capture of six villages yesterday.
Nevertheless, the US-led anti-ISIS coalition conducted a series of supportive air raids on ISIS militants in the Raqqa governorate. Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook said the targets of the air strikes included Islamic State fighting positions and vehicles.
One US airstrike on the city of Tabqa killed Abdul Fattah al-Hassan al-Othman, an ISIS security official, a Kurdish outlet reported.
On the other hand, according to Amaq Agency, ISIS militants destroyed 6 SDF vehicles southeast of Ain Issa town on Monday after Kurdish forces sustained 49 casualties in their initial advance the day before.
Meanwhile, the Syrian Al-Watan newspaper, which is close to the Damascus government, speculated that the Kurdish offensive on the predominately Arab city of Raqqa was merely intended to improve the SDF’s public relations and media coverage.
The SDF has upwards of 30,000 fighters mobilized for operation ‘Euphrates Wrath’. US special forces and advisors are also present on the ground alongside the Kurdish forces: