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Iraqis in Ramadi move out to facilitate army campaign

12 December 2015 20:38


People in Iraq’s flashpoint city of Ramadi have started moving out as the army and volunteer fighters prepare for a major offensive to liberate the area that has been under the control of the Daesh Takfiri terrorists.

The spokesman for Iraq’s Defense Ministry said on Saturday that Iraqi families have left their houses in the capital of Anbar Province.

“Tens of families managed to run away from Daesh captivity and sought asylum in our military units,” Brigadier General Yahya Rasul said, adding that the people moved to al-Humayrah District, responding to a previous request by the defense ministry.

Rasul said the Iraqi military and the volunteers have devised a detailed strategy for the liberation of Ramadi’s central part, which is located between the Euphrates River and its tributary, the Warar River.

On December 10, Daesh destroyed a lock on the Euphrates River which had served as the last bridge connecting the center of Ramadi to other parts. Intelligence estimates showed that about 300 terrorists were trapped in the area after the destruction of the lock.

The campaign to retake Ramadi, which was taken by Daesh in May, began earlier this month, with pro-government forces managing to record back-to-back victories against the militants. The allied forces seized control of a military complex north of the city earlier this week before they captured the neighborhood of Husaybah on the eastern outskirts of the city and al-Ta’meem district in southwest.

Reports over the past days suggest that Daesh has also destroyed the infrastructure inside Ramadi, including buildings and radio towers.

Daesh began its offensive in Iraq in June 2014. Pro-government forces have managed to push back the militants from some of their major bastions, including the cities of Tikrit and Baiji in Salahuddin Province, while operations continue to retake positions in Anbar and also in the northern province of Nineveh.

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