Iraq says it has retaken one of IS group’s last strongholds

6 Oct 2017   Iraq

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi announced Thursday that Iraqi forces have driven the Islamic State group from one of the extremists’ last strongholds in the country, the northern town of Hawija. The victory came as Baghdad and Iraq’s Kurdish region remain in a political deadlock following a controversial Kurdish independence referendum. But on the battlefield Iraqi and Kurdish forces continue to collaborate, squeezing the jihadis who once controlled nearly a third of the country. Al-Abadi made the declaration at a news conference in Paris with French President Emmanuel Macron, who has offered to help mediate between Iraq’s government and the autonomous Kurdish region, which voted for independence last week. “I want to announce the liberation of the city of Hawija today,” al-Abadi said, calling it a “victory not just for Iraq but for the whole world.” Still, Abadi’s government is struggling to contain the fallout from […]

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