Iraq's Saladin 'still under ISIL control'

A high-level security source said that security forces backed by Iraqi military aircraft had entered the area in force, triggering clashes that remain ongoing.

Iraq's Saladin 'still under ISIL control'
World Bulletin / News Desk
 
Armed men affiliated with the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant (ISIL) group remain in control of large swathes of the Suleiman Beik neighborhood in the town of Tuz Khormato in Iraq's northern Saladin province.

"Terrorist groups have maintained a heavy presence in the southwestern part of the town, which has been abandoned by local residents who fled in a mass exodus," Suleiman Beik neighborhood director Mohamed al-Bayati told Anadolu Agency on Tuesday.

A high-level security source said that security forces backed by Iraqi military aircraft had entered the area in force, triggering clashes that remain ongoing.

"Security forces have raided several parts of the neighborhood since Monday with the support of the Air Force," the source added.

One Suleiman Beik resident, who declined to be named, told AA that there was no ISIL presence in the area and that government troops were simply using the group as a pretext to enter the area and make arrests.

According to another neighborhood resident who recently fled the area, the army had shelled the neighborhood for days, destroying several residential homes in the process.

Taleb Mohamed, a local official, said last week that ISIL members had assumed control of the neighborhood after capturing a number of surrounding villages.

Last Mod: 18 Şubat 2014, 11:53
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