A joint Kurdish-Arab militia has begun a new phase in the operation to dislodge the Islamic State from its stronghold in Raqqa, Syria, moving to isolate the city and largely cut off the resupply of arms, supplies and fighters, a United States military spokesman in Baghdad confirmed on Sunday.

American warplanes are flying bombing missions against the Islamic State’s “leadership, command and control, and resources” in Raqqa and outside the city in support of the militia, the Syrian Democratic Forces, said the spokesman, Col. John Dorrian.

Militia fighters “announced they were proceeding with their march toward Raqqa, and have done so,” Colonel Dorrian said in an email.

He said that “it may be some time” before the 30,000- to 40,000-strong force reached Raqqa, and that the American-led coalition would continue to train and recruit more forces — especially Arab troops — for an eventual attack on the city.

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Image courtesy of Reuters

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