Syrian women and children gather on the western front after fleeing the centre of Raqa on October 12, 2017. AFP / BULENT KILIC
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Air raids by U.S. coalition warplanes have intensified in recent days as Kurdish and Arab militias seek to drive surrounded Daesh (ISIS) militants from their last strongholds in Raqqa – but the toll on civilians has been severe. Hundreds of civilians fled the city Thursday, many wounded and malnourished after being trapped for months by fighting between Daesh and the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces.Abdullah Ali's burns were still raw from an airstrike that brought down his building and killed his entire family a week ago in central Raqqa.Ali's neighbor Abdo Hussein said more than 50 people were in the building when the airstrike hit.All those who escaped Thursday came from a district near the stadium. They said many buildings had been hit as Daesh fighters fired from them.
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