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Iraq army forces enter Daesh-held Ramadi

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Iraqi fighters from the Popular Mobilization Units, fighting alongside Iraqi forces, advance towards the center of Baiji, some 200 kilometers north of Baghdad, during a military operation against Daesh Takfiri group on October 18, 2015. (AFP photo)

In their latest advance against Daesh militants, Iraqi army troops backed by volunteer forces have entered the city of Ramadi, which is currently under the control of the Takfiri group.

Local media reports said on Sunday that the army forces made their way into the provincial capital of the restive western province of Anbar from several directions.

Iraqi military officials also said that the Iraqi troops, along with volunteer forces, advanced into the city center after crossing the strategic bridge of Albu Faraj, north of Ramadi.

Ground troops were reportedly supported by Iraqi warplanes that targeted Daesh positions and cleared the path for the Iraqi troops to move on.

Reports said earlier in the day that Iraqi forces had killed a senior Daesh member, known as Abu Masab, in the northern part of Ramadi.

Iraqi security forces also cleared some areas, including Shera, in the western part of Ramadi. A security source said Iraqi forces launched a sudden attack against Daesh terrorists in the areas of Albu Faraj and Albu Ziab in northern Ramadi, destroying militant hideouts. At least 15 terrorists were killed in the clashes with Iraqi forces.

Iraqi Federal Police also conducted an operation in the city of Husaybah near Ramadi, killing a number of terrorists and destroying their hideouts.

The developments come as heavy rains on Friday had brought to a halt military operations to regain the city of Ramadi from the terrorists.

“The military operations to liberate Ramadi have stopped because of the weather,” Ismail Mahalawi, the general in charge of Anbar, said on Friday, adding, “The rain and humidity caused hundreds of explosive devices and booby traps laid by Daesh to explode.”

Iraqi army soldiers and the Popular Mobilization Units are engaged in joint operations to take back militant-held regions.

Gruesome violence has plagued the northern and western parts of Iraq ever since Daesh launched its offensive in Iraq and took control of portions of the country in June 2014.

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