U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

U.S.-backed militias raised a flag inside the stadium in Raqqa, Syria, on Tuesday, a Reuters witness said, as a four-month battle to recapture the capital of the so-called Islamic State came to an end.

The fighting was over, but the alliance of Kurdish and Arab militias was clearing the stadium of mines and any remaining hiding militants, said Rojda Felat, commander of the Raqqa campaign for the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

A war monitor, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, said Islamic State was now completely cleared from the city.

The fall of Raqqa, where Islamic State staged euphoric parades after its string of lightning victories in 2014, is a potent symbol of the jihadist movement’s collapsing fortunes. From the city, the group planned attacks abroad.

The SDF, backed by a U.S.-led international alliance, has been fighting Islamic State inside Raqqa since June. (Reuters)

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U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

A member of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), which is backed by U.S. Special Forces troops, holds up the SDF flag at the Al-Naim square in Raqqa on Oct. 17, 2017. (Photo: Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Fighters of Syrian Democratic Forces are seen in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 17, 2017. (Photo: Rodi Said/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Fighters of Syrian Democratic Forces gesture the “V” sign in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 17, 2017. (Photo: Rodi Said/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Fighters of Syrian Democratic Forces raise a white flag near the National Hospital complex where the Islamic State militants are holed up, at the frontline in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 16, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Members of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), backed by US special forces, check the area near Raqa’s stadium as they clear the last positions on the frontline on Oct. 16, 2017 in the Islamic State (IS) group jihadists crumbling stronghold. (Photo: Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

A member of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), backed by US special forces, talks on the radio near Raqa’s stadium as they clear the last positions on the frontline on Oct. 16, 2017 in the Islamic State (IS) group jihadists crumbling stronghold. (Photo: Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Members of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), backed by US special forces, walk on a building near Raqa’s central hospital as they clear the last positions on the frontline on Oct. 16, 2017 in the Islamic State (IS) group jihadists crumbling stronghold. (Photo: Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Fighters of Syrian Democratic Forces ride on trucks as their convoy passes in Ain Issa, Syria, Oct. 16, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Female fighters from Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) react in Raqqa, Syria, Oct.16, 2017. (Photo: Rodi Said/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

A member of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), backed by US special forces, looks out from a building at the frontline in Raqa on Oct. 16, 2017 in the Islamic State (IS) group jihadist’ crumbling stronghold. (Photo: Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Fighters of Syrian Democratic Forces walk along a road past destroyed vehicles at the frontline in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 16, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Members of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), backed by US special forces, celebrate at the frontline in the Islamic State (IS) group jihadists crumbling stronghold of Raqa on Oct. 16, 2017. (Photo: Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Destroyed buildings are pictured in a residential district at the frontline in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 16, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Fighters of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) sit inside a vehicle in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 16, 2017.
(Photo: Rodi Said/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Destroyed vehicles are pictured along the alley between houses in a residential district at the frontline in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 16, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

A fighter of Syrian Democratic Forces takes up a position inside a building towards the National Hospital where the Islamic State militants are holed up at the frontline in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 16, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Members of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), backed by US special forces, walk on a building near Raqa’s central hospital as they clear the last positions on the frontline on Oct. 16, 2017 in the Islamic State (IS) group jihadists crumbling stronghold. (Photo: Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Syrian women and children gather on the western front after fleeing the center of Raqqa on Oct.12, 2017. (Photo: Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Syrian women and children gather on the western front after fleeing the center of Raqaq on Oct. 12, 2017. (Photo: Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Syrian women and children gather on the western front after fleeing the center of Raqqa on Oct. 12, 2017. (Photo: Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Members of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), Syrian fighters backed by US special forces, hold a position position on the western frontline of Raqqa on Oct. 8, 2017. (Photo: Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Fighters of Syrian Democratic Forces inspect weapons and munitions recovered at the former positions of the Islamic State militants inside a building at the frontline in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 7, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

A fighter of the Syrian Democratic Forces fires his weapon towards the positions of the Islamic State militants in the National Hospital, at the frontline in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 8, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

A vehicle destroyed by an air strike by coalition forces is pictured among the rubble along a road at the frontline in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 7, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

A British volunteer fighter of Syrian Democratic Forces runs for cover to avoid sniper fire of Islamic State militants, at the frontline in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 7, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

A member of the Syrian Democratic Forces helps his comrade wash his hair at their position at the frontline in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 7, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

A fighter of Syrian Democratic Forces fixes his hair using a broken mirror at the frontline in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 6, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

A uniform of a member of Islamic State militants is pictured as it was displayed by the Syrian Democratic forces at their positions inside a building at the frontline in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 6, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

An American volunteer fighter of Syrian Democratic Forces fires an RPG during a battle with Islamic State militants at the frontline in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 6, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Destroyed buildings are pictured during sunset at the frontline in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 6, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

A fighter of Syrian Democratic Forces places empty plastic bottles on stairs of a building at their positions, at the frontline in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 6, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Members of the Syrian Democratic Forces pass through a hole in the wall as they advance their positions towards the Islamic State militants who are holed up at a stadium in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 4, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

General view of a collapsed building due to fighting in Raqqa’s old city in Syria, Oct. 5, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Syrians displaced from the city of Deir Ezzor wait for to get bread on the outskirts of Raqa on Oct. 2, 2017.
Syrian fighters backed by U.S. special forces are battling to clear the last remaining Islamic State group jihadists holed up in their crumbling stronghold of Raqqa. (Photo: Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Members of Syrian Democratic Forces take up positions inside a building as they battle Islamic State militants in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 1, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

A member of Syrian Democratic Forces who was wounded during a battle with Islamic State militants smokes a cigarette in Raqqa, Syria , Oct. 1, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

U.S.-backed militias defeat Islamic State in Raqqa, Syria

Smoke rises in the stadium as members of Syrian Democratic Forces battle with Islamic State militants in Raqqa, Syria, Oct. 1, 2017. (Photo: Erik De Castro/Reuters)

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