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International report

Returning to Raqqa

Audio 04:00
Mohammad Abdulla rows across the Euphrates river.
Mohammad Abdulla rows across the Euphrates river. RFI/Filip Warwick

In the Syrian city of Raqqa much of the infrastructure remains flattened. The four-month push in 2017 to oust the Islamic State armed group destroyed 90 percent of the city.

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Some 20,000 bombs, rockets and missiles were dropped between June and October last year, that’s according to Airwars, a UK-based not-for-profit organisation that tracks international air wars against IS and other groups in Syria and Iraq.

Nevertheless local authorities continue to clear munitions and other improvised explosive devices, also known as IED’s, left behind by IS fighters in residential areas, administrative centres, hospitals and schools.

But the question on many peoples lips remains: when will the reconstruction of the city begin with international coalition help.

In this final report of a 5-part series, Filip Warwick tries to find an answer to this question while in Raqqa.

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