Only 50% of regions between Salahuddin, Anbar liberated: Military

Iraqi security forces ride in vehicles travelling to Mosul to fight against militants of Islamic State at an Iraqi army base in Camp Taji in Baghdad, February 21, 2016. REUTERS/Ahmed Saad

Baghdad ( The Joint Operations Command announced that only fifty percent of the regions between Salahuddin and Anbar provinces were liberated.

At least 15 Islamic State members were killed in airstrike by the U.S.-led Coalition jets in the western desert, the War Media Cell said in a statement.

Moreover, Iraqi joint troops have combed thirty six villages during the second part of the operations to purge Upper Euphrates and al-Jazeera regions.

“Troops of the army, al-Hashd al-Shaabi (Popular Mobilization Forces) and Federal Police, backed by army jets, combed thirty six villages and an area of 4200 square kilometers,” Lt. Gen. Abdul Amir Yarallah, commander of Upper Euphrates and Jazeera Combing Operations, said.

“Troops managed to explode and defuse more than 250 explosives and destroy a workshop for booby-trapping as well as killing several militants,” he added.

In related news, the WMC also denied news on full liberation of regions of al-Jazeera and Upper Euphrates.

This came after the mobilization forces’ media service announced earlier the liberation of Jazeera regions between Anbar and Salahuddin.

On Friday, the War Media Cell announced combing 45 villages, destroying seven vehicles and defusing 450 explosives within the second phase of operations, which launched on Thursday to liberate al-Jazeera regions, which fall between each of Salahuddin, Nineveh and Anbar provinces.

PMF media said Thursday the forces had cleared 55 villages in al-Jazirah.

Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi said during his weekly press briefing on Tuesday that his country has defeated Islamic State over the military level, but will declare final victory after desert areas are purged of militants.

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