Daily Management Review

Iraqi State TV says ISIS to be Driven off Ramadi in Days by Government Forces


12/23/2015




Quoting army chief of staff Lt. General Othman al-Ghanemi, Iraqi state television said on Wednesday that the government forces expect to dislodge Islamic State militants from the western Iraqi city of Ramadi within days.
 
This would be the second major successful attempt by government forces to take over Islamic State controlled cities if Ramadi is captured after Tikrit in Iraq. After the militant group seized a third of Iraq, a major OPEC oil producer and U.S ally, last year if this offensive is successful.
 
"In the coming days will be announced the good news of the complete liberation of Ramadi," Iraqia TV cited the officer as saying.
 
Ramadi is a Sunni Muslim city on the river Euphrates some 100 km (60 miles) west of Baghdad that the Isis had captured in May. On Tuesday, Iraq's armed forces began advancing on the last district held by the militants in the center of Ramadi. Iraqi intelligence estimated the number of Islamic State fighters entrenched in the center of Ramadi at between 250 and 300 before the start of the attack.
 
Since the Iraqi government forces wants to rely entirely on its own troops and not use Shi'ite militias, the progress has been slow as the forces do not want rights abuses allegations cropping up such as occurred after the recapture of the city of Tikrit from the militants in April.
 
Iraq's second largest city, Mosul, is still under the control of the Islamic State as well as Falluja, which lies between Ramadi and Baghdad in addition to large areas of Syria - the core of what it has declared to be a caliphate.
 
The government forces have killed hundreds of militants since Tuesday and have laid siege to the IS-held district of Ramadi, said the state TV citing military statements.
 
No casualty toll for the government forces was given by the state TV. At the dawn of Tuesday units crossed the Euphrates river into central districts using two bridges - one rebuilt by army engineers, and a second floating structure, an army spokesman said, describing fighting as "ferocious" as a start of the operations.
 
An officer on the ground asking not to be identified said that there has been no major push into the center overnight.
 
The officer said that sniper fire and exchanges of mortar rounds and the occasional skirmishes is what the fighting has been limited to. The army was proceeding cautiously so as to avoid civilian casualties, reported the Iraqi state TV citing the Anbar province military commander Major Gen. Ismail Shihab as informing.  
 
On Wednesday, the Iraqi state TV also reported, citing a military statement, that air strikes by the Iraqi airforce have killed eight senior Islamic State commanders.
 
"F-16 planes killed dozens of terrorists including eight senior commanders of Daesh in strikes on Hawija and Anbar," said the statement, using a derogatory name for Islamic State and not giving further details.
 
This follows Tuesday’s offensive to free the city of Ramadi from the clutches of the Islamic State.
 
(Source:www.reuters.com)






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