Iraqi troops deployed along Syrian borders to face terrorist threat

Iraqi Counter Terrorism Services (CTS) soldier is seen during a battle between CTS and Islamic State militants in western Mosul, Iraq, April 25, 2017. ( Reuters)

Anbar ( – A high security presence was reported Saturday along the borderline between Iraq and Syria in anticipation of any terrorist threat coming from the Syrian side.

“A joint force, made up of border guards, servicemen and tribal fighters, have been intensively deployed on the Iraqi-Syrian borders after receiving reports that terrorist cells are trying to infiltrate from Syria to Anbar to target Iraqi troops,” a security source told Iraqi website BasNews.

“The troops were seen on the watchtowers scattered from al-Waleed border crossing to the desert areas falling between Anbar and Mosul provinces to face any possible terrorist coming from Syria,” the source explained.

Iraq declared the collapse of Islamic State’s territorial influence earlier in November with the recapture of Rawa, a city on Anbar’s western borders with Syria, which was the group’s last bastion in Iraq.

A government campaign, backed by a U.S.-led international coalition and paramilitary troops, had been launched in 2016 to retake IS-held regions, managing to retake all havens, most notably the city of Mosul, the group’s previously proclaimed capital.

Despite the group’s crushing defeat at its main havens across Iraq, Islamic State continues to launch sporadic attacks against troops with security reports warning that the militant group still poses a threat against stability in the country.

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