SDF evacuates 3,000 people in Baghouz amid ISIS surrenders

The Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) opened a passage for people on Monday as ISIS has resorted to using human shields, thus slowing the SDF advance.

“Slowing down the offensive in Baghouz yesterday, we managed to evacuate about 3,000 ppl from ISIS pocket through the corridor we opened,” tweeted Mustafa Bali, the head of the SDF Media Office early on Tuesday.

“A large number of Daesh jihadists surrendered to our forces among the same group overnight,” Bali said using another term for ISIS.

The SDF is the partnered ground force of the US-led international anti-ISIS coalition. They reported a slow down in the Baghouz assault on Monday because of ISIS using human shields.

The Rojava Information Center (RIC) reported many of those fleeing Baghouz were Russian women and some were showing symptoms of a disease inflicted by the bites of sand flies, leishmaniasis.

It put the number of ISIS member surrendering from al-Baghouz at “200-300 ISIS fighters.”

The Peoples’ Protection Units (YPG) comprise the bulk of the SDF.

“The last ISIS holdout is a tiny patch in Baghouz, northern Syria. The SDF, YPG, YPJ [Women’s Protection Unit] fighters to eliminate the group, are currently engaged in an operation. As the operation continues the group keeps shrinking, makes a last stand and is on the verge of an imminent defeat,” stated the YPG.

The coalition’s Operation Roundup began on May 1, 2018, with the aim to clear ISIS from the Middle Euphrates River Valley — the group’s last bastion east of the river.