Tal Afar (IraqiNews.com) Islamic State began evacuating the so-called ‘security squares’, which the group established after gaining control on Tal Afar town, a local source said.
Speaking to AlSumaria News, the source said, “the frequent shelling on IS headquarters and targeting of rest houses of prominent leaders urged the group to begin evacuation of the ‘security squares’ established in the wake of controlling the towin in 2014.”
The squares, according to the source, “is a tactic employed by the group to enhance its control on Tal Afar through opening headquarters that are surrounded by houses for the members’ families.”
The source, who preferred anonymity, added that “evacuation of these squares is an evidence that the group is aware of its loss in the battle, thus it tries reducing the losses to transfer the members and their families to areas far away from the shelling.
Earlier on the day, an IS leader in charge of the defense lines was killed alog with his companion by a mortar missile in the town.
Defense Ministry declared, earlier this week, conclusion of arrangements ahead of military invasion of the town. An army official was quoted as saying that an army division was ordered to leave Mosul toward Tal Afar within preparations to retake the town, which has been set as the next target of operations after victory was declared in Mosul on July 10.