ISIS’s last march: Truckloads of the final fighters and their jihadi brides – carrying designer knockoff bags – line up to leave terrorists’ last frontline after US-coalition airstrikes prompt their surrender
- At least 36 trucks and two buses were seen leaving the last patch of territory in the remote village of Baghouz
- They were escorted by gun-mounted trucks belonging to the United States-backed Syrian Democratic Forces
- Some 300 IS militants, along with civilians believed to be their families had been under siege for a week
- The move came just hours after US-led coalition air strikes intended to pressure the militants to leave the area
The final remnants of Islamic State have left the group’s last pocket of territory in eastern Syria – as truckloads of fighters and their jihadi brides are seen being transported from the area.
The move came just hours after US-led coalition air strikes intended to pressure the militants targeted the area on the banks of the Euphrates River.
At least 36 trucks and two buses were seen leaving the area through a humanitarian corridor from the militants’ last patch of territory in the remote village of Baghouz near the Iraqi border.
They were escorted by gun-mounted trucks belonging to the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).
As the convoy passed, automatic machine gun fire could be heard in the distance and coalition aircraft flew overhead.
Some 300 IS militants, along with hundreds of civilians believed to be mostly their families, have been under siege for more than a week in the tent camp in Baghouz.
The Kurdish-led SDF surrounding the patch of land have been unable to carry out a final assault on it because of the presence of the civilians.
An SDF spokesman, Mustafa Bali, said there were coalition air strikes and intermittent clashes earlier on Friday with the militants, which were meant to pressure them into allowing the last civilians to leave.
Men suspected of being Islamic State (IS) fighters are searched by members of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) after leaving the group’s last holdout of Baghouz in Syria’s northern Deir Ezzor province
Some 300 IS militants, along with hundreds of civilians believed to be mostly their families, have been under siege for more than a week in the tent camp in Baghouz. But today the last remnants (pictured) were lined up and told to leave
Recapturing Baghouz would mark an end to the territorial rule of the militants’ self-proclaimed caliphate that once stretched across a third of both Syria and Iraq. Men suspected of being Islamic State fighters are pictured here
The removal of IS fighters and civilians (pictured) would also allow US president Donald Trump to begin withdrawing American troops from northern Syria, as he has pledged to do, opening a new chapter in Syria’s eight-year civil war
In the past few weeks, nearly 20,000 people had left Baghouz through the humanitarian corridor, leaving the IS holdout on foot, but the militants then closed the passage and no civilians left for a week until Wednesday, when a large group was evacuated. The last remaining fighters and civilians are pictured
The Trump administration, which abruptly announced in December that it was pulling out of Syria, said on Thursday that it will keep 200 US troops in the country for now. It comes after men suspected of Islamic State fighters were forced out of the group’s last remaining stronghold on Friday (pictured)
Men walk towards an area controlled by fighters of the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF,) after leaving the Islamic State (IS) group’s last holdout of Baghouz
A spokesman for the U.S.-backed force known as the Syrian Democratic Forces, Mustafa Bali, said there were coalition airstrikes and intermittent clashes earlier Friday with the militants, meant to pressure them into allowing the last civilians and fighters (pictured) to leave
On the convoy that left Baghouz on Friday, civilians could be seen sitting atop the flatbed trucks, including women, covered from head to toe in black. While children were also among those being trucked out of the area
This picture taken on Tuesday, shows a convoy of trucks carrying people fleeing the Islamic State (IS) group’s last holdout of Baghouz in Syria. Few believe, however, that ending the group’s territorial rule will end the threat posed by an organization that still stages and inspires attacks through sleeper cells in both Syria