The city of Raqqa, Syria, was liberated by Syrian troops backed by US, UK and other Coalition forces. Following the liberation of Mosul, Iraq, earlier in the year, this marked the beginning of the end of the so-called caliphate declared by Daesh just over three years ago.
The battle to liberate Raqqa took 130 days, leaving 80% of buildings badly damaged and over 270,000 Syrians displaced. Since then the UK has contributed £10million for humanitarian assistance and some Raqqawis are starting to return to their homes.
Why Caroline chose this moment...
“The liberation of Raqqa was critical moment in the fight against Daesh. But now we must sustain focus, commitment and determination in the next phase – helping communities in Iraq and Syria rebuild and establish inclusive local governance. These next few months will test whether we have learnt the lessons of past interventions.”