Fighters from the Syrian Democratic Forces in a military parade during the funeral of colleague in northeast Syria (File/AFP)
The US-backed, Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces have renewed their attacks to take the last Islamic State pockets of territory in eastern Syria.
The SDF suspended the offensive last month after Turkish shelling of positions of the Kurdish militia YPG, the leading faction in the Forces.
The attacks were the first by Ankara on areas east of the Euphrates River, where Kurdish groups control much of the cantons of Kobani and Cezire. At least 10 YPG fighters were reportedly killed.
Turkey considers the YPG part of the Turkish Kurdish insurgency PKK, which has fought Ankara’s forces for more than 30 years.
After the shelling, the US and SDF started joint patrols near the Turkish border, bringing a protest from the Government of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.
Meanwhile, the US-led coalition stepped up airstrikes on the ISIS-controlled Hajin pocket in the Deir ez-Zor area, near the Iraqi border.
The SDF said on Sunday that operations had restarted as the result of “intensive contacts between our forces’ leadership and the international coalition and active diplomatic efforts aimed at defusing the crisis near the border”.