World ISIS fighters holed up in Raqqa believed to have women, children to use as human shields

03:05  13 october  2017
03:05  13 october  2017 Source:   CBS News

Raqqa: The women who helped defeat ISIS

  Raqqa: The women who helped defeat ISIS Kurdish female fighters have celebrated in Raqqa this week after the defeat of ISIS militants, whose brutal rule over the city has come to an end.When asked what motivated them to dive into one of the fiercest battles against the terror group to date, the women said they did it both for the Kurdish cause and to liberate the women of Raqqa.

But amongst the fighters are civilians being used as human shields . "They have women and children with them," commander Zaaem Ahmadi told CBS News. He used to be an electrician in Raqqa , and claims to have killed dozens of ISIS extremists.

Children worldwide are used in hostilities as fighters , spies, messengers and sex slavesGetty. Children are often sold into a kind of modern-day slavery. In Raqqa , where poverty is rampant, Isis “Escape to abduction: The horrific fate of North Korean women who escape to China. READ MORE.

The ruins of Raqqa© Provided by CBS Interactive Inc. The ruins of Raqqa

RAQQA, Syria -- The heart of Raqqa is shattered, laid waste by three years of ISIS rule and a siege that's lasted four months.

On the front line, U.S.-backed Syrian militiamen decided to put on a show for the camera. ISIS gunmen are hiding in the ruins of a nearby apartment building, they said, but it looked more like boredom than real fighting. Progress here is grindingly slow.

They know exactly where ISIS is -- in a tiny sector of the city -- but they can't flush them out.

Around 250 fighters are thought to be dug in, some of them in a stadium, others around Naim Square, which ISIS once decorated with severed heads.

"We were prisoners": American teen forced into ISIS speaks

  The 15-year-old grew up in Kansas, and misses the comforts of home: "There's a restaurant called Texas Roadhouse, they have steak there," she saidOn the edge of Raqqa, Williams encountered a group of women who have just escaped ISIS territory. One of them revealed she's American.

At least 2,000 Isis militants are still holed up in the Syrian city of Raqqa fighting for their lives as a US-led coalition closes in on the city, according 23/30. Syrian refugee women and children outside the entrance to their tents in the refugee camp in the Bekaa Valley, Lebanon, close to the Syrian border.

Human Rights. When you talk about Raqqa , you will do injustice to the truth of the young men and women fighting at the front lines in Raqqa , if you restrict it to the advances on the ground, the captured areas and the numbers of ISIS thugs taken out.

But amongst the fighters are civilians being used as human shields. "They have women and children with them," commander Zaaem Ahmadi told CBS News. He used to be an electrician in Raqqa, and claims to have killed dozens of ISIS extremists. He took us to see a long-dead corpse.

One of the many stray cats in Raqqa© Provided by CBS Interactive Inc. One of the many stray cats in Raqqa

The only signs of life in most neighborhoods, apart from the fighters, are stray cats. They're struggling to survive, like everyone else in this beleaguered city.

U.S.-backed forces continue to say that they are just days away from victory in Raqqa, but they've already opened up a new front further to the south, where ISIS is being squeezed into a shrinking area in the desert. So the fighting will continue.

Islamic State defeated in its Syrian capital Raqqa .
<p>U.S.-backed militias said they had defeated Islamic State in its former capital Raqqa on Tuesday, raising their flags over the jihadist group’s last footholds in the city.</p>RAQQA, Syria — U.S.-backed militias in Syria declared victory over Islamic State in its capital Raqqa on Tuesday, raising flags over the last jihadist footholds after a four-month battle.

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