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e defeat of Islamic State in their de facto Syrian capital, appears to be imminent. US-backed fighters from the Kurdish YPG militia, telling Reuters that they expect the city could be cleared of the Jihadists by the end of the weekend. A US military official speaking on behalf of the coalition, says about 100 islamic state members have surrendered in the span of a single day.
There are also reports that some remaining IS militants are being bussed out of the city, in a deal brokered with the coalition. Coalition representatives couldn't immediately confirm, yet it would follow a pattern seen in other Syrian battles. Raqqa's been under siege since June. And Islamic State's loss there will be considered a major milestone for the international effort to destroy their self-declared Caliphate.
But like what's happened to Mosul in Iraq, and other former IS territories, there's now a delicate path forward to reconstruction and reconciliation, for those who've lived under years of their rule.>>
> It's a familiar tale, and one that can't be verified. The battle for Raqqa has taken a heavy toll on civilians. Human rights groups believe hundreds have been killed in the fighting, after months of shortages in food and medicine.