Iraq elite forces 3km from Fallujah centre

Iraqi counter-terrorism forces are now some three kilometers away from the center of Fallujah, advancing to recapture the strategic city from its southern areas, a senior military commander says.

The commander of Fallujah Liberation Operations said the security forces have tightened control over Fallujah’s southern areas on Friday and are advancing to retake the city.

“Daesh wanted the battle to take place outside the city but we have moved in, and retaken all this area in eight days,” Lieutenant General Abdelwahab al-Saadi said, referring to Fallujah’s southern neighborhoods.

He added that Iraqi troops are “3.1 kilometers (less than two miles) from the main official building in the center” of the city.

Saadi also estimated that the Iraqi forces would manage to liberate the city from Daesh terrorists “in days.”

“We’ll be there, in the very center, in days. Days, not weeks,” he said.

He also noted that “more than 500 Daesh members have already been killed since the start of the operation.”

“Fallujah is a very symbolic place for Daesh… but the battle is not different from other ones and when they are trapped, they try to run away just like they did before,” the commander added.

On May 22, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi announced the start of the liberation operation of the Daesh-held Fallujah. Nearly 70 kilometers west of the capital Baghdad, the strategic city in the Anbar province has been under the Takfiris’ control since 2014.

Gruesome violence has plagued the northern and western parts of Iraq ever since Daesh terrorists launched an offensive in June 2014, and took control of portions of the Iraqi territory.

The militants have been committing heinous crimes against all ethnic and religious communities in Iraq, including Shias, Sunnis, Kurds, and Christians.

Iraqi army soldiers, backed by fighters from the Popular Mobilization Units, are seeking to win back militant-held regions in joint operations.

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