A US-backed Kurdish group has scored a steady but sluggish progress in eastern Syria as the Islamic State ferociously fights back to defend its last foothold in the Syrian desert.
Backed heavily by the US coalition, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) captured the towns of al-Madina and Qabrata located south-east of the group's former stronghold of Dashishah, southern countryside of Hasakah.
Several ISIS militants have been killed in the operation while the Kurdish militia managed to capture 4 others alive.
The advance of the US-backed group is largely restrained by the countless landmines, IEDs and explosives perniciously planted by the terror group along the main roads as well as the places they withdraw from.
"The Islamic State militants have gained an extensive experience in planting explosives in such a professional manner. This is the main obstacle that slows us down", an SDF source said.