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Syrian army battles Islamic State in al-Mayadin town

BEIRUT – The Syrian army and its allies have captured areas of Islamic State-held al-Mayadin in eastern Syria, a Hezbollah-run military news outlet reported on Thursday, in an advance into the jihadist group's main urban base of operations in Syria.

 

Backed by Russia, Iran and Shiite militias, the Syrian army encircled the militants in al-Mayadin on Sunday.

 

In June, two US intelligence officials said they believed Islamic State had moved most of its diminished command structure and propaganda team to al-Mayadin, southeast of its former capital of Raqqa.