Iraqi army launches battle to retake Ramadi from jihadists

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Iraqi soldiers fire towards ISIS positions in the Garma district of Anbar province. File photo: AFP

ARA News

DUHOK – The Iraqi army announced on Monday the start of the battle for Ramadi, in a bid to liberate the capital of Anbar province from militants of the Islamic State (ISIS). 

General Commander of the Iraqi army, Othman al-Ghanimi, said in a statement that Iraqi military forces have started an extended operation against headquarters of the Islamic State in Ramadi city on Monday midnight. 

“The campaign is aimed at regaining Ramadi from the fist of Daesh terrorists,” al-Ghanimi said, using the Arabic acronym for ISIS. 

The Iraqi forces demanded the residents of Ramadi on Sunday to evacuate the city, in a bid to avoid civilian casualties during the anti-ISIS military campaign. 

However, local sources in Ramadi told ARA News that the city is under siege by the army while ISIS militants prevent civilians from leaving their homes. 

“Civilians are in panic as they cannot leave the city under the current circumstances,” one of the residents said.

“People are afraid of being used by the militants as human shields against the army bombardment.” 

Reporting by: Mir Yaqoub

Source: ARA News

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