Fallujah: At least 130 Iraqi soldiers have been killed in a series of attacks by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) armed group near the city of Fallujah in Anbar province.
The first attack took place on Wednesday when 10 suicide bombers of ISIS, hit the town of Kubaisah, and then it attacked an army convoy to the south of Fallujah at Amiriyat al-Fallujah with roadside bombs said the military source.
Lieutenant-General Abdelwahab al- Saadi, commander of the Fallujah operation said. While the Iraqi army had slowed its advance, it was still at the fringes of Fallujah.
“We are here in Naimiyah district and operations are ongoing, and the advance towards the centre of Fallujah is continuing too,” he said.
The battle for Fallujah is not only a military undertaking but also a political element that needs to be addressed simultaneously, rather than after the fact.
The ISIL is blamed by Iraqi government for using human shields and preventing civilians from leaving the city for the slow progress. The UN said
it had reports of people starving to death and others and being killed for refusing to fight for ISIL.
Haider al-Abadi, Iraq’s prime minister, said in comments broadcast by state television that. “It would’ve been possible to end the battle quickly if protecting civilians wasn’t one of the foundations of our plan.”
Iraqi commanders have claimed to have killed dozens of ISIL fighters since the start of the operation.