Iraq forces retake government HQ in Tikrit: Officials
Iran Press TV
Tue Mar 31, 2015 10:1AM
Iraqi forces, backed by Shia volunteer forces, have managed to wrest control of the Salahuddin provincial government headquarters in the strategic northern city of Tikrit from ISIL Takfiri militants.
"Iraqi forces cleared the government complex in Tikrit," an army major general, speaking on condition of anonymity, said on Tuesday, adding, "The government buildings have been under our control since last night (Monday)."
Karim al-Nuri, a top commander of Badr volunteer fighters, said members of the pro-government Popular Mobilization units also took part in the operation.
Meanwhile, Salahuddin Governor Raad al-Juburi confirmed that the government headquarters had been retaken, saying Iraqi soldiers have hoisted Iraq's national flags over various recaptured buildings.
The development comes a day after Iraqi army troopers, backed by Shia and Sunni volunteers, raised the Iraqi national flag over the Grand Mosque of Tikrit.
The forces also retook the city's medical college on Monday as they continued to gain more ground against the ISIL Takfiris.
Tikrit was seized by ISIL in June last year. The city's recapture is crucial for the Iraqi army in its quest to take control of the country's second-largest city, Mosul.
ISIL started its campaign of terror in Iraq in early June 2014. The heavily-armed militants took control of the country's northern city of Mosul before sweeping through parts of the country's Sunni Arab heartland.
Iraqi soldiers, police units, Kurdish forces, Shia volunteers and Sunni tribesmen have succeeded in driving the ISIL terrorists out of some areas in Iraq.
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