US military says IS ‘capital’ of Raqqa 90 per cent freed

Washington: The US military says the Syrian city of Raqqa is about 90 per cent cleared of Islamic State fighters.

After the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces announced that Raqqa was fully liberated today, a spokesman for the coalition, Col. Ryan Dillion, told reporters at the Pentagon that more fighting remained.

Dillion, speaking from his headquarters in Baghdad, said “pockets of resistance” can be expected as local Syrian Kurdish and Arab fighters allied with the US coalition press ahead with clearing operations in the city.

Dillon said that even after Raqqa is fully liberated, more fighting will be required to achieve the military defeat of IS. He said there are still about 100 IS fighters in Raqqa and an estimated 6,500 in Syria and Iraq combined.