Iraq warns of Daesh attempt to exploit virus outbreak, renew terror campaign
Iran Press TV
Thursday, 23 April 2020 4:49 PM
Iraq has warned that the Daesh Takfiri group could exploit a coronavirus outbreak in the country –which has been the main focus of the government and the army – and renew its campaign of terrorism.
In a Wednesday meeting, Iraq's National Security Council, chaired by caretaker Prime Minister and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces Adel Abdul-Mahdi discussed the latest developments on the country's health situation as well efforts by the armed forces to confront the remnants of the Daesh terror group.
According to a statement released by his office, Abdul-Mahdi called for devising new plans to chase remnants of Daesh terrorist group out of the country and prevent them from exploiting the situation when Iraq has mobilized all its resources to contain the spread of the coronavirus and the armed forces are busy combatting the disease.
He further praised the "spirit of cooperation and national unity" between state agencies and citizens, calling for safeguarding Iraq's security and stability.
"Iraq is in a good health condition and is ahead of many countries across the world in terms of the fewer number of infections and deaths resulted from the corona virus," he said.
According to official figures, Iraq has so far recorded some 1631 confirmed cases and 83 deaths from the pandemic.
Iraqi armed forces, backed by Popular Mobilization Units (PMU), better known by the Arabic word Hashd al-Sha'abi, managed to remove Daesh from all of its urban strongholds in the country, prompting former prime minister Haider al-Abadi to announce the total defeat of Daesh in the Arab country in late 2017.
However, the remnants of the Takfiri group, which conduct terror sporadic attacks against Iraqi security forces and civilians alike with increasing regularity, attempt to regroup and wage a new era of its reign of terror and destruction in the region.
Earlier on Monday, Iraqi fighter jets pounded the hideouts of the remnants of the Daesh terrorist group in Iraq's north-central province of Salahuddin, killing more than a dozen of them.
The media bureau of Iraq's Joint Operations Command said in a statement that the hideouts were used by terrorist elements to target security forces and citizens.
In a related development on Tuesday, a security source in Iraq's eastern province of Diyala announced the start of a large-scale military operation in the northeast of the province, saying that Iraqi government troops, backed by the air force and Popular Mobilization Units (PMU), better known by the Arabic word Hashd al-Sha'abi, launched the operation 23 kilometers northeast of the provincial capital, Baquba.
Sleeper cells of Daesh are active in an area between the Iraqi provinces of Salahuddin and Diyala, launching attacks on government forces and civilians.
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