Iraq - Daesh

Iraqi Forces Launch Push on Daesh Controlled Town of Sherqat

Iraqi Forces Launch Push on Daesh Controlled Town of Sherqat
Tue Sep 20, 2016 16:07:53

Iraqi army and tribal forces launched an operation on Tuesday at 5:30 am local time to retake northern town of Sherqat from the Islamic State (ISIS, ISIL, IS and Daesh) group in the latest move to prepare a broad offensive on Terrorist bastion of Mosul in Nineveh province.

ISIS captured Sherqat more than two years ago. The town lies on the west bank of the Tigris River 260 kilometers (160 miles) northwest of Baghdad and around 80 kilometers (50 miles) south of Mosul.

Iraqi forces have already reconquered other towns north of Sherqat on the way to Mosul.

"We are making good progress," Joint Operations Command spokesman Yahya Rasool told AFP. "Sherqat is important, we can't move on Mosul and have terrorists control Sherqat."

Sherqat lies in the far north of Salaheddin province, which includes the cities of Samarra and Tikrit, and close to the border with Nineveh province of which Mosul is the capital.

Ahmed al-Assadi, the spokesman of the Hashed al-Shaabi (Popular Mobilisation Forces) paramilitary force, also announced the operation.

"The sons of Hashed al-Shaabi and the Iraqi army backed by the air force launched the "Sherqat Dawn operation" to finish expelling those terrorist gangsters from usurped Iraqi land," he said.

The Hashed al-Shaabi, which has played a big part in retaking ISIS-held areas since 2014, is under the control of the prime minister and dominated by Shiite militia. It also includes Sunni tribal forces supporting the government against ISIS.

Rasool stressed that only tribal forces sometimes referred to as Hashed al-Ashaeri (Tribal Mobilisation) were fighting in Sherqat.

Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, speaking from New York where he met US President Barack Obama, said the same operation also included efforts to flush out ISIS terroriss from desert areas near Ramadi and Heet in the western province of Anbar.


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