US-backed Syrian forces capture Minbij from Islamic State: watchdog

US-backed Syrian forces have captured the city of Minbij in northern Syria from the Islamic State extremist militia, a monitoring group reported on Saturday.

The Kurdish-led Democratic Forces of Syria (DFS) have taken almost full control of Minbij more than two months after they started a major offensive to drive Islamic State from the city near the Turkish border, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

“The DFS forces are now combing the centre and northern section of Minbij, hunting for hidden elements of the Islamic State organization,” the Observatory’s head, Rami Abdel-Rahman, told dpa.

Capturing the city and its hinterland would cut Islamic State off from its last access route to the border and the outside world.

The fall of Minbij is likely to have a major impact on Islamic State's ability to bring supplies and fighters to its de facto Syrian capital of al-Raqqa and its remaining territories in Syria and Iraq.

The al-Qaeda splinter group seized Minbij in 2014.

Last update: Sat, 06/08/2016 - 10:47

More from World

Britain's May will be first foreign leader to meet President Trump

British Prime Minister Theresa May will be the first foreign leader to visit new US President Donald Trump, the...

Ex-leader Jammeh leaves Gambia paving way for president's return

Gambians celebrated in the streets Saturday as ruler Yahya Jammeh left the country after 22 years in power,...

Trump's hiring of son-in-law doesn't violate nepotism laws

US President Donald Trump may hire his son-in-law Jared Kushner to be one of his most influential White House...

Trump vows support for intel community after Russia hacking spat

President Donald Trump vowed support for the US intelligence community in a visit to the Central Intelligence Agency...

Netanyahu wants to discuss Iranian threat with Trump

Israeli Premier Benjamin Netanyahu wants to coordinate future Iran policy with US President Donald Trump, he wrote...