Iraqi forces close in on last ISIS outpost near Tal Afar

Iraqi forces recapture half of last town held by ISIS in northern Niniveh province.

Arutz Sheva Staff,

Tal Afar
Tal Afar

Iraqi forces have recaptured half of the last town held by the Islamic State (ISIS) group in northern Niniveh province as fierce clashes rage against jihadist fighters, the military said Wednesday, according to AFP.

General Abdelamir Yarallah, head of military operations in the region, said federal police and special units had hoisted the Iraqi flag after having "liberated" the eastern sector of Al-Ayadieh town and the nearby village of Qubuq.

Last Sunday, Iraqi troops, police and special forces seized full control of the city of Tal Afar, near the Syrian border, with ISIS fighters taking refuge in Al-Ayadieh, located 15 kilometers (10 miles) to the north.

Around "150 to 200 ISIS fighters moved with their families up to Al-Ayadieh", said Brigadier General Andrew A. Croft, deputy commander of the U.S.-led coalition air units supporting the Iraqi advance in northern Iraq.

After its ouster in July from Nineveh's provincial capital of Mosul, the second largest city in Iraq, ISIS now controls only the city of Hawija, located 300 kilometers north of Baghdad, and desert areas along the border with war-torn Syria, according to AFP.

The Iraqi military’s retaking of Mosul in July was the most severe blow ISIS had suffered to that point, though the struggle against the Sunni Muslim terror organization continues in Syria and large portions of northern and western Iraq.