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U.S. sees capture of Syria town key to destroying ISIS

For months, the town of al-Shadadi, a key logistics hub for the group

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U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter told Congress on Thursday that the expected capture of the Syrian town of al-Shadadi would represent a key step toward dismantling ISIS in Syria.

Read also: Syrian army grabs Aleppo province town from ISIS

“By encircling and taking this town, we are seeking to sever the last major northern artery between Raqqa and Mosul, and ultimately dissect the parent tumor into two parts,” Carter said in prepared remarks to the House Appropriations Committee.

For months, the town of al-Shadadi, a key logistics hub for the group, has been in the sites of U.S.-backed forces that Washington has repeatedly resupplied with weapons to bolster their advance.

Carter pointed to the battle for al-Shadadi as he cited “operationally significant strides” in the campaign against the Sunni militant group, including Iraq’s recapture of the city of Ramadi from ISIS last year.