FALLUJA: Iraqi forces hunted down holdout jihadists in Fallujah Saturday after retaking the city centre and trained their sights on Mosul, the Islamic State´s last remaining major hub in the country.
While not fully under government control yet, Fallujah is the latest in a string of battlefield losses for IS, which has seen its two-year-old “caliphate” shrink significantly in recent months.
Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi on Friday declared Fallujah retaken after the national flag was raised over the main government compound, but IS fighters still hold most northern neighbourhoods.
Elite Iraqi forces “are continuing their progress in the liberation of neighbourhoods in northern Fallujah”, Lieutenant General Abdulwahab al-Saadi, overall commander of the operation, told AFP.
Forces led by the police of Anbar province, where Fallujah is located, were meanwhile combing reconquered southern neighbourhoods for pockets of IS fighters and explosive devices, he said.
Abadi announced the recapture of the city of Ramadi, Anbar´s provincial capital, in December but the security forces only established full control over the city in February.
Over the past few days, IS has carried out several significant attacks in the Ramadi area, the latest on Saturday in a region called Zankura.
Courtesy : TheNews