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By Bassem Mroue And Zeina Karam The Associated Press

Fear grips Syria’s Raqqa as airstrikes intensify, IS stiffens defences after Paris attack

BEIRUT Islamic State militants are stiffening their defences for a possible assault on their de facto capital of Raqqa, as international airstrikes intensify on the Syrian city in retaliation for the Paris attacks. IS fighters are hiding in civilian neighbourhoods and preventing anyone from fleeing, former residents say.