Inside Story

Is it all over for ISIL in Syria?

ISIL’s days in Syria appear numbered and its fighters are now on the run.

The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or ISIS) once controlled an area stretching from western Syria to eastern Iraq – nearly the size of the United Kingdom.

It proclaimed a caliphate in 2014 and imposed its harsh rule on millions of people. But it was flushed out of Iraq and eventually lost most of its ground in Syria.

What is left of the group now is confined to a tiny part of the Syrian village of Baghouz, with fighters vowing a battle to the death.

The United States-backed Syrian Democratic Forces, made up of mainly Kurdish fighters, has launched an offensive to retake the ISIL’s last village.

So, if ISIL is cleared out of its final urban foothold, will the threat from the armed group be over? And where will its fighters go?

Presenter: Elizabeth Puranam


Mohammed Masbah – Director at the Moroccan Institute for Policy Analysis

Yusuf Alabarda – Security analyst at SETA

Macer Gifford – Human rights activist and anti-ISIL campaigner