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Inside Raqqa: New Video Shows Life in ISIS Stronghold in Syria

Video obtained by NBC News and smuggled out of the ISIS stronghold of Raqqa offers a rare glimpse into life under the militants.

Life under ISIS can look surprisingly normal.

Video obtained by NBC News and smuggled out of the militants' Syrian stronghold of Raqqa offers a rare glimpse into everyday life under the militants. The city has been under ISIS control for nearly two years and serves as the Sunni extremists' de facto capital.

A screengrab from video smuggled out of the ISIS stronghold of Raqqa, Syria.NBC News

Despite the war waged outside by ISIS, life inside the Syrian city appears almost peaceful: birds chirping, scooter engines revving.

Buses drive down a paved road as an ISIS flag waves in a traffic circle. A man in jeans carries plastic grocery bags down the sidewalk, while another stops to speak to a one of the many taxis lined up in the street.

Horns honk as a woman in a black abaya — or full black veil — walks by; then the call to prayer is heard. A young man is seen pushing a stroller, with a burqa-clad woman clutching a handbag alongside him. There's little reminder of the dangerous forces at play — until a group of men jump out of a taxi, strapping guns to their backs.