Iraqi forces have launched an offensive to seize one of many final remaining areas underneath ISIL management within the nation.
Two Iraqi infantry divisions and Sunni tribal forces are finishing up the operation in Anbar province.
It is believed ISIL fighters are holding 10,00zero civilians hostage within the city of Rawa.
Iraqi forces seized a number of villages from ISIL, or the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant group, on Saturday in an operation to retake Rawa, the operation’s commander mentioned.
The Euphrates Valley city and close by villages have been bypbaded by authorities troops and allied paramilitaries after they retook the city of al-Qaim on the Syrian border final week.
But on Saturday, troops backed by paramilitaries recruited among the many area’s Sunni Arab tribes “launched a major offensive to liberate Rumana and the Rawa area”, General Abdelamir Yarallah mentioned.
He later mentioned they’d “retaken Rumana and its bridge on the Euphrates” together with 10 different villages.
Rumana is on the north aspect of the Euphrates simply throughout from al-Qaim, whereas Rawa, a small city, lies downstream.
Rawa is the final city nonetheless held by ISIL, also called ISIS, other than Albu Kamal, simply throughout the Syrian border.
Haider al-Abadi, Iraq’s prime minister, mentioned on Saturday the Rawa operation goals to “clean open areas in the desert” of western Iraq.
The recapture of Rawa would mark the ultimate battleground defeat of the group in Iraq and the demise of the “caliphate” declared by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in 2014 over mbadive expanses of Iraq and Syria.
Syrian authorities forces and allied paramilitaries from Lebanon, Iraq and Iran overran Albu Kamal on Thursday however misplaced the city once more simply two days later after a collection of ISIL badaults.
“ISIL fully recaptured Albu Kamal, and regime forces and allied militia are now between one to two kilometres from the city limits,” Rami Abdel Rahman, head of the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, mentioned on Saturday.
Against this backdrop, Abadi mentioned on Saturday that losses from the warfare towards ISIL has price Iraq $100bn thus far.
“Iraq has lost $100 billion in the anti-Daesh war, but we have achieved success in three battles; namely liberating the land, maintaining Iraq’s unity and standing up to the threats,” Abadi mentioned throughout a speech, utilizing the Arabic identify for ISIL.