The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have commenced ground operations for the second phase of Operation Roundup in order to defeat Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) remnants in north-eastern Syria, Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve officials have said.
Focused on clearing Dashisha, the SDF ground offensive is strengthened by coordinated coalition cross-border air and artillery strikes, in addition to strikes by the Iraqi Air Force and army artillery stationed near the border.
The Iraqi security forces have improved their presence at the border to prevent the escape of ISIS members from Syria into Iraq.
Beginning 1 May this year, Operation Roundup completed its first phase on 15 May with the clearance of Baghuz, Syria.
Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve US Army lieutenant general Paul E. Funk II said: “This is a well-coordinated, powerful offensive to annihilate ISIS remnants in northeastern Syria.
“Our partners are aggressively taking the fight to what’s left of ISIS’s conventional force, which has been demoralised by military losses and its leadership’s abandonment of the terrorists they left on the front lines.”
In May this year, coalition strikes that supported Operation Roundup surpassed the total number of strikes in April by 123%, and March by 304%.
The on-going strikes are targeted towards the ISIS command-and-control centres, weapons production and storage facilities, safe houses, and facilitation sites.
Funk said that the coalition and Iraqi forces are also targeting ISIS tunnel complexes and underground storage sites.