Iraqi Forces Find Isis Bomb Factory In Fallujah
Iraq's elite counter insurgency CTS force came across an Islamic State (ISIS) bomb factory in the Shuhadaa area of Fallujah as they continued to clear the city of the militant extremists.
The assault was spearheaded by Iraq's elite counter-terrorism service, which has learned to fight the jihadists' mix of guerrilla and conventional tactics, with army and police units also taking key positions. Around 85 coalition air strikes supported the advances.
CTS Staff General Abdul Wahab Alsaidi showed off stacks of bombs and booby-traps abandoned by ISIS as the army advanced.
He said only two neighbourhoods, Mualimeen and Jolan, remained in IS hands and once they fell the city would be "completely purged", although the damage caused by the occupation and liberation is evident all around.
Fallujah was the first Iraqi city to fall to the extremist group in January 2014 and was the last major ISIS stronghold in the sprawling Anbar province, the heartland of the country's Sunni minority.
The group still controls Iraq's second largest city, Mosul, in the north and the Fallujah operation has provided a possible model for the offensive on ISIS’ de facto capital in Iraq, which is still being planned, according to Iraqi and Western officials.
More than 85,000 people have fled Fallujah, according to the United Nations, which estimated the population before the operation began at around 90,000, already just a third of its size before ISIS seized control.