Air strikes pummel Syria's Raqa as US-backed forces advance on IS

Heavy bombardment and fierce fighting shook the Islamic State group's Syrian stronghold Raqa on Monday, as US-backed forces said they captured a new neighbourhood from entrenched jihadists. Bursts of gunfire and artillery as well as the thud of air strikes conducted by the US-led coalition filled the air in western neighbourhoods of Raqa, on what AFP's correspondent said was the heaviest day of bombardment to date. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, updating an earlier toll, said the air strikes killed at least 10 civilians, two of them children.

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