Iraqi forces Monday launched an offensive in terrorist-held areas southeast of Daesh's [the Arabic acronym for terrorist ‘ISIS/ISIL' group] bastion of Hawija, the operations commander said.
The Iraqi troops and the popular mobilization forces [known in Arabic as the Hashed al-Shaabi], are fighting to retake the northern town of Hawija after expelling Daesh from large parts of the territory they seized in Iraq in 2014.
"The Counter-Terrorism Service and Hashed al-Shaabi have started a broad operation to liberate Rashad and nearby villages as part of the second phase to liberate Hawija," Lieutenant General Abdel Amir Yarallah said.
The Hashed al-Shaabi confirmed the offensive and said it had retaken five villages west of Rashad, which is 35 kilometers southeast of Hawija.
On Sept. 21, Iraqi forces launched an offensive to retake an extremist enclave around Hawija, swiftly taking the town of Sharqat on its second day before pushing on towards Hawija itself.
On Friday, they started the battle to retake the town itself, one of the last Daesh bastions in the country along with a stretch of the Euphrates Valley near the border with Syria.
Source: News Agencies, Edited by website team