Kurds Assert Control of Hasakah: The Battle for Rojava (Dispatch 3)

The northeastern city of Hasakah is one of the most ethnically and culturally diverse in Syria. Its population of Kurds, Sunni Arabs, and Christians was until recently politically divided between equal zones of Kurdish and Assad regime control. Immediately following the fall of the strategic border town of Tal Abyad from Islamic State (IS) fighters to Kurdish YPG forces in June, however, IS hit back with a sudden shock offensive on the regime-held half of Hasakah, causing regime forces to crumble in a matter of days.

As the Syrian army and loyalist militias relinquished control to IS, the YPG entered the battle, first encircling IS positions and then launching a ground offensive supported by pounding coalition airstrikes. Despite IS using their elite forces in the offensive, the combination of airstrikes and YPG ground troops proved too much and IS fled its recent gains in the city, leaving behind only ruined buildings and mangled bodies.

With IS pushed back from Hasakah’s southern outskirts, VICE News follows the YPG as they become masters of areas of the city that until a few weeks ago had always been held by the Syrian regime. With government forces and the YPG facing off across this disputed territory, the future status of Hasakah is now unclear.

Watch “Pushing Back the Islamic State: The Battle for Rojava (Dispatch 1)” – http://bit.ly/1TjDm3U

Watch “Night Operation Against the Islamic State: The Battle for Rojava (Dispatch 2)” – http://bit.ly/1J5SHOI

Read “In Photos: Grief, Pride and Hope in the Ruins of Kobane” – http://bit.ly/1PmshJw

Subscribe to VICE News here: http://bit.ly/Subscribe-to-VICE-News

Check out VICE News for more: http://vicenews.com

Follow VICE News here:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/vicenews
Twitter: https://twitter.com/vicenews
Tumblr: http://vicenews.tumblr.com/
Instagram: http://instagram.com/vicenews
More videos from the VICE network: https://www.fb.com/vicevideos

Night Operation Against the Islamic State: The Battle for Rojava (Dispatch 2)

The northeastern city of Hasakah is one of the most ethnically and culturally diverse in Syria. Its population of Kurds, Sunni Arabs, and Christians was until recently politically divided between equal zones of Kurdish and Assad regime control. Immediately following the fall of the strategic border town of Tal Abyad from Islamic State (IS) fighters to Kurdish YPG forces in June, however, IS hit back with a sudden shock offensive on the regime-held half of Hasakah, causing regime forces to crumble in a matter of days.

As the Syrian army and loyalist militias relinquished control to IS, the YPG entered the battle, first encircling IS positions and then launching a ground offensive supported by pounding coalition airstrikes. Despite IS using their elite forces in the offensive, the combination of airstrikes and YPG ground troops proved too much and IS fled its recent gains in the city, leaving behind only ruined buildings and mangled bodies.

VICE News followed a YPG detachment on a night operation, providing support from Hasakah’s Red Villas district to advancing Kurdish forces against IS fighters trying to defend the strategic al-Zuhor neighborhood, under waves of constant airstrikes from both the coalition and the Syrian regime’s air force.

Watch “Pushing Back the Islamic State: The Battle for Rojava (Dispatch 1)” – http://bit.ly/1TjDm3U

Read “Turkey Is Denying Entry to Bodies of YPG Fighters Killed Fighting IS” – http://bit.ly/1KfsERz

Subscribe to VICE News here: http://bit.ly/Subscribe-to-VICE-News

Check out VICE News for more: http://vicenews.com

Follow VICE News here:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/vicenews
Twitter: https://twitter.com/vicenews
Tumblr: http://vicenews.tumblr.com/
Instagram: http://instagram.com/vicenews
More videos from the VICE network: https://www.fb.com/vicevideos

Pushing Back the Islamic State: The Battle for Rojava (Dispatch 1)

The northeastern city of Hasakah is one of the most ethnically and culturally diverse in Syria. Its population of Kurds, Sunni Arabs, and Christians was until recently politically divided between equal zones of Kurdish and Assad regime control. Immediately following the fall of the strategic border town of Tal Abyad from Islamic State (IS) fighters to Kurdish YPG forces in June, however, IS hit back with a sudden shock offensive on the regime-held half of Hasakah, causing regime forces to crumble in a matter of days.

As the Syrian army and loyalist militias relinquished control to IS, the YPG entered the battle, first encircling IS positions and then launching a ground offensive supported by pounding coalition airstrikes. Despite IS using their elite forces in the offensive, the combination of airstrikes and YPG ground troops proved too much and IS fled its recent gains in the city, leaving behind only ruined buildings and mangled bodies.

For the first time, the YPG now finds itself in almost total control of Hasakah, with the regime squeezed into the central government district and IS cornered in the city’s southern outskirts. VICE News secured exclusive access to YPG fighters as they cleared southern Hasakah of Islamic State militants.

Watch: The Girls Who Fled To Syria: Groomed By The Islamic State – http://bit.ly/1IQ374T

Read: Islamic State Seizes Key Town in Central Syria – http://bit.ly/1MSxrxt

Subscribe to VICE News here: http://bit.ly/Subscribe-to-VICE-News

Check out VICE News for more: http://vicenews.com

Follow VICE News here:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/vicenews
Twitter: https://twitter.com/vicenews
Tumblr: http://vicenews.tumblr.com/
Instagram: http://instagram.com/vicenews
More videos from the VICE network: https://www.fb.com/vicevideos