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Raqqa still haunted by IS one year after its expulsion

IEDs planted by the Islamic State in Raqqa still litter the war-torn Syrian city one year after the radical group was ousted from its former stronghold, but mine-disposal teams also find newly planted mines.

RAQQA, Syria — Hagid "the minesweeper" put on his black latex gloves and placed his work kit on a piece of collapsed ceiling. Flashlight stuck between his teeth, he illuminated the mine he just discovered behind flowerpots in a stairwell. The building, once part of the Euphrates University, is no more than a wreck — the result of a gruesome, four-month-long battle. The second floor crashed on the first.

Hagid cut a wire and raised the neutralized mine with both hands to take a look at it. “A nongovernmental organization was supposed to have completely cleaned the building,” the Raqqa native told Al-Monitor.

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