Monday 19 February 2018

Iraqi troops 'liberate' centre of Tal Afar

An Iraqi policeman checks the belongings of a group of displaced civilians at a collection point on the outskirts of Tal Afar (AP/Valint Szlanko)
An Iraqi policeman checks the belongings of a group of displaced civilians at a collection point on the outskirts of Tal Afar (AP/Valint Szlanko)

The centre of the town of Tal Afar has been "fully liberated" from the Islamic State group, the Iraqi military said.

It brings Iraqi forces a step closer to taking full control of one of the extremists' last strongholds in Iraq.

Sunday's statement said Iraqi troops have captured all of the town's neighbourhoods and they are now heading to al-Ayadia district, about six miles northwest of Tal Afar, where militants have fled.

Last Sunday US-backed Iraqi troops launched a multi-pronged operation to retake Tal Afar, a month after declaring Mosul, Iraq's second largest city, fully liberated.

Tal Afar is about 93 miles from Syria's border.

The militants still control the northern town of Hawija as well as Qaim, Rawa and Ana, in western Iraq near the Syrian border.

AP

Press Association

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