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The occupation of Raqqa by Da'esh has finally come to an end thanks to the joint efforts of the Syrian Democratic Forces and the Global Coalition to counter Da'esh. The liberation of Raqqa city is a decisive step towards eliminating the threat of Da’esh in Syria and Iraq and freeing their people from its arbitrary rule.
The European Union, as a non-military member of the global coalition against Da’esh, has actively supported the defeat of Da’esh in Syria and has been assisting the population affected as the leading donor in humanitarian support.
It remains essential to protect the civilian population in Raqqa city and in the governorate as a whole and to assist the most vulnerable population. The free and unimpeded flow of humanitarian assistance to the populations most in need should be assured as swiftly as possible, and International Humanitarian Law should be respected throughout the country.
Swift action is needed now to stabilise the liberated areas and support early recovery, both of which require the re-establishment of a representative and accountable local administration in order to enable the provision of services to the population, allow the safe and dignified return of displaced populations and prevent the resurgence of violent extremism. Beyond this victory, a lasting peace in Syria will be achieved only through a national political agreement brokered by the United Nations in Geneva.