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US Leads ISIS Fireworks Show With 37 Independence Day Strikes

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The U.S.-led anti-Islamic State coalition struck the terrorist group 37 times July 4, Operation Inherent Resolve (OIR) revealed in a statement Wednesday.

The majority of the strikes took place in Syria where the U.S. is currently actively supporting the Syrian Democratic Force’s (SDF) push on ISIS’s capital of Raqqa. The SDF is a coalition of largely Kurdish forces on the ground in Syria who focus on fighting the terrorist group.

The strikes destroyed ISIS oil infrastructure and went after ISIS tactical teams and equipment near Raqqa. The Raqqa strikes destroyed “17 fighting positions, three tactical vehicles, a vehicle, two heavy machine guns, a mortar system, a weapons cache, a command and control node, a VBIED facility, and a VBIED,” OIR said using an acronym for vehicle borne improvised explosive device.

OIR also conducted four strikes in Iraq where the Iraqi Security Forces are in the last phases of the military campaign to retake the city of Mosul. The campaign is heavily supported by the U.S. military and has been ongoing since October 2016. Three U.S. strikes “engaged two ISIS tactical units; destroyed 33 fighting positions, two rocket-propelled grenade systems, and a front-end loader; damaged five fighting positions and a command and control node; and suppressed a mortar team.”

ISIS is currently constrained to two separate enclaves within Mosul, OIR spokesman Army Col. Ryan Dillon told reporters Thursday. The enclaves are separated from each other by the Iraqi Security Forces and are currently under assault. The Iraqi Security Forces will “imminently” announce the city’s liberation, Dillon said.

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