Monday, of a secret deal that had the so-called Islamic State (ISIS)
surrender Raqqa City to the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF)
in early October.
BBC has uncovered details of a secret deal that let hundreds of IS
fighters and their families escape from Raqqa, under the gaze of the
US and British-led coalition and Kurdish-led forces who control the
city,” the report began.
deal to let IS fighters escape from Raqqa – de facto capital of
their self-declared caliphate – had been arranged by local
officials. It came after four months of fighting that left the city
obliterated and almost devoid of people. It would spare lives and
bring fighting to an end. The lives of the Arab, Kurdish and other
fighters opposing IS would be spared,” the BBC continued.
to the report, some 250 Islamic State terrorists were allowed to
leave the city, along with 3,500 of their family members that were
trapped in Raqqa with them.
didn’t want anyone to leave,” says Col Ryan Dillon, spokesman for
Operation Inherent Resolve, the Western coalition against IS, as
quoted by the BBC.
this goes to the heart of our strategy, ‘by, with and through’
local leaders on the ground. It comes down to Syrians – they are
the ones fighting and dying, they get to make the decisions regarding
operations,” he added.
Islamic State fighters reportedly fled to many areas, including
Turkey and the Deir Ezzor Governorate.
U.S. Coalition had previously criticized the Syrian government and
Hezbollah for allowing a smaller convoy ISIS terrorists and civilians
to leave the Lebanese border for the Deir Ezzor Governorate.