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IS tightens grip in Syria bastion Raqa as assault nears

A Syrian woman carries a child as she leaves an area controlled by Islamic State (IS) group jihadists for a zone held by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF)Internet cafes closed down, travel bans and new checkpoints: residents say jihadists are trying to tighten their grip on power in Raqa as US-backed forces near the Islamic State group’s Syrian bastion. A Kurdish-Arab alliance called the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) began an operation to recapture the northern city on November 5. The flow of information into and out of Raqa had already been restricted since January 2014, when IS seized the city from rebels who had captured it from regime forces in March 2013.

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