Iraqi Government Announces Liberation of Tal Afar
SOUTHWEST ASIA --
The global coalition to defeat the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria congratulates Prime Minister Al-Abadi and all Iraqi forces on their stunning victory today in Tal Afar and northern Ninewah province, Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve officials said today.
Under the command of the Iraqi prime minister, all branches of the Iraqi forces took part in the liberation of Tal Afar -- the 9th, 15th and 16th Iraqi Army Divisions, the Counter Terrorism Service, the Federal Police and Emergency Response Division, Iraqi local police, the Popular Mobilization Forces and the Kurdistan Regional Government’s peshmerga, officials said.
Dangerous Work Remains
While the city and critical infrastructure are under Iraqi control, dangerous work remains to completely remove explosive devices, identify ISIS fighters in hiding and eliminate any remaining ISIS holdouts so they do not threaten the security of Tal Afar in the future, officials said.
"Following their historic liberation of Mosul and now a swift and decisive victory in Tal Afar, the [Iraqis] have shown, once again, they are an increasingly capable force that can protect the Iraqi people, defeat ISIS within Iraq and secure the country's borders," Army Lt. Gen. Stephen J. Townsend, the commander of U.S. and coalition forces in Iraq and Syria, said in a release
“This is yet another significant achievement for [Iraq’s forces] and the government and people of Iraq,” Townsend added.
The coalition contributes to the defeat of ISIS by providing Iraqi forces with equipment, training, intelligence, precision fire support and military advice to leaders, officials said. By working by, with, and through the government of Iraq and the Iraqi forces, the coalition has enabled the Iraqis to reclaim 90 percent of their land from ISIS.
The coalition will continue to support the government of Iraq and Iraqi security forces as they fight on to defeat ISIS in western Anbar province and Huwayjah, officials said.