On the seventh day of the deadly prison standoff in the north-eastern city of al-Hasaka, an unknown number of jihadists belonging to the so-called Islamic State (IS) are still hiding out in the former vocational school. Meanwhile, the Kurdish-dominated Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), security forces of the autonomous region of Rojava and their allied support in the form of American fighter jets and helicopters, are keeping the area sealed off. According to agency reports, between 160 and 260 people have died since IS launched their attack on Thursday — the majority of them IS fighters, around 45 members of Kurdish security forces, and a few civilians. However, as of Wednesday, the intensity of the fighting has decreased. These men are suspected of being affiliated with the Islamic State (IS) group, and it is highly likely that they re-join IS after they managed to escape. While it is still unclear how many prisoners actually managed to escape, the looming question is: What is going to happen next? So far, it is safe to say that the drawn-out battle showcases the determination of both sides, and leaves no doubt that IS still has considerable strength. But at the same time, it shows that IS is not able to overrun local forces… Read full this story
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