WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have liberated more than 700 square miles (some 1,813 square kilometers) of Daesh-held territory near the Syrian city of Raqqa and have launched a new phase of the offensive to recapture the city, Operation Inherent Resolve said in a release on Monday.
"The Syrian Democratic Forces announced the start of the next phase of their operation to isolate ISIL [Daesh]'s self-proclaimed capital of Raqqa, Dec. 10," the release stated. "In their march toward Raqqa, the SDF has already liberated dozens of villages and more than 700 square miles of ISIL-held terrain."
Earlier in November, the Kurdish-led SDF announced Operation Wrath of Euphrates to reclaim the city of Raqqa from the militants. Captured in 2013, Raqqa serves as Daesh's de facto capital in Syria.
On Saturday, Department of Defense spokesman Peter Cook said the United States will send additional 200 soldiers to Syria to aid in the Raqqa offensive.
The US-led coalition of more than 60 nations has been conducting airstrikes against Daesh, a designated terrorist group by the United States, Russia and other nations, in Syria and Iraq since 2014.