Iraqi Forces Mount Major Operation against Daesh Terrorists
Iraqi army and police backed by volunteer forces mounted a massive operation against the Daesh (ISIL) terrorist group in Saladin province, north of Baghdad.
Iraqi army and the Popular Mobilization Forces have started the operation to clear an area west of Samarra called Samarra island from Daesh terrorists, Iraqi Joint Operations Command said in a statement, according to al-Sumaria TV network.
The operation code-named “Labaik Ya Rasoulollah 3” began at 6 a.m. (local time) by the Iraqi army and Federal Police with air support from anti-Daesh coalition to liberate the area in Saladin province.
Iraq has been facing the growing threat of terrorism, mainly posed by the Daesh terrorist group.
Daesh militants made swift advances in much of northern and western Iraq over the summer in 2014, after capturing large swaths of northern Syria.
However, a combination of concentrated attacks by the Iraqi military and the volunteer forces, who rushed to take arms after top Iraqi cleric Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani issued a fatwa calling for fight against the militants, have blunted the edge of Daesh offensive.
Iraqi forces retook the northern city of Baiji in October 2015 and then Ramadi, 100 km (60 miles) west of Baghdad, at the end of last year and have been making advances against the terrorists since.