World Bulletin / News Desk
The Hawija and Shirqat districts, respectively located in Iraq’s Kirkuk and Saladin provinces, are seen as the ISIL terrorist group’s final redoubts in northern Iraq.
According to a statement issued by al-Abadi’s office, the prime minister “inspected the army’s ongoing preparations for purging areas east of the Tigris River [Shirqat] and in western Kirkuk’s Hawija district”.
Captain Saad Mohamed of the army’s Saladin Operations Command told Anadolu Agency on Wednesday that U.S.-led coalition warplanes had targeted ISIL positions in western parts of Shirqat.
He went on to note that the army was fully prepared to launch a fresh push against ISIL in both districts and was now awaiting the prime minister’s order to do so.
The terrorist group still maintains a significant presence in Iraq despite a series of recently military defeats.
Last month, the group was driven from Tal Afar in Iraq’s northern Nineveh province. And in July, the city of Mosul -- once the capital of ISIL’s self-proclaimed “caliphate” -- fell to the army after a nine-month campaign.