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Fighters from Deir al-Zor military council which fights under the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) sit on a back of a truck in the village of Abu Fas, Hasaka province, Syria September 9, 2017. REUTERS/Rodi Said

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BEIRUT (Reuters) - The U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces Alliance reached an industrial zone miles to the east of Deir al-Zor city in rapid advances against Islamic State militants on Sunday, it said in a statement.

The SDF announced on Saturday it had launched an operation against the jihadists in northern and eastern parts of Deir al-Zor province, which borders Iraq.

The advances bring the SDF to within 15 km (10 miles) of the Syrian army and its allies, which this week broke a years-long Islamic State siege of government-held parts of Deir al-Zor on the other side of the Euphrates river.

(Reporting by John Davison; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle)

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Reuters