American-backed forces are close to gaining control of the last Syrian territory held by so-called Islamic State. Syrian Democratic Forces, the SDF – made up of Kurdish and Arab fighters – have captured the town of Hajin and are now in the process of clearing out Islamist fighters.
Hajin lies in the valley of the Euphrates river, close to the border with Iraq. It’s the final urban stronghold of the jihadist militia, which once controlled substantial territory in Syria and Iraq. But as the mainly Kurdish SDF inches closer to final victory over IS, Turkey is threatening to launch an assault against the Kurds further north.