Damascus: US-backed Kurdish and Arab fighters freed the Manbij city in Syria from Islamic State (IS) terrorists as the residents celebrated the liberation from group’s two-year rule over the city.
“Jubilation broke out in many neighbourhoods after IS terrorists lost control of Manbij to US-backed rebels and the centre of the city was liberated,” CNN quoted the Pentagon as saying.
The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), an alliance of Kurdish and Arab forces backed by the US, was battling IS to take control of Manbij — one of the most important cities for the terrorist organisation — in northern Syria since May.
Manbij residents cut off beards, burnt niqabs and smoked cigarettes — things they were not allowed to do during IS rule.
“Here they used to execute people and hung their heads here and leave it for three days. They would execute people for anything, using the excuse he did not believe,” a man said pointing out to an area described as an ISIS execution site.
Defeating the terrorist group in Manbij was important as it essentially blocks a supply route IS has between its heartland of Raqqa and Turkey.