US-backed forces recapture main road from Raqqa to Deir al-Zor in Syria

Video released by the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces, purported to show the militia fighting with Islamic State militants for what is said to be the last main road to the de-facto capital of the extreme Muslim group in Syria, the city of Raqqa. Severing the highway between the group’s de facto capital and its stronghold of Deir al-Zor province is a major development which has been confirmed by a British-based monitoring group, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. 

It marks a major blow against the Islamic State that is under intense military pressure in both Syria and Iraq. Even though the Islamic State is continuously losing swathes of its territory, the extreme Muslim group still controls parts of Syria, including much of the center of the country, and nearly all the eastern province of Deir al-Zoe, which stretches all the way to the Iraqi part of its self-declared caliphate.