Fights Continue Between Iraqi Forces and IS over Fallujah, Agencies Warn on Civilians Safety inside City

Time: 5:59 p.m. CEST

Islamic State militants began a dawn counter-attack after Iraqi government troops started an operation to retake Fallujah, BBC News reports. On May 31, the Islamic State group attacked the Iraqi army troops, which yesterday advanced toward the southern suburb of Nuaimiya. The Iraqi army, although with casualties, defeated the attackers. People inside Fallujah face the food issues, as aid workers shows concerns for the safety of 50,000 people trapped inside Fallujah.

BBC News says reports “speak of people starving to death and of being killed for refusing to fight for IS.” Iraqi military appealed those in the city to leave or to stay indoors. But, Islamic State militants are not allowing civilians to leave from Fallujah. Aid agencies warned on human catastrophe with people are not being allowed to escape.

Reuters reports, soldiers from the elite Rapid Response Team earlier stopped the militants 500 meters (yards) from the al-Shuhada district. “Our forces came under heavy fire, they are well dug in trenches and tunnels,” said the commander speaking in Camp Tariq, the rear army base south of Fallujah, 50 km (30 miles) west of Baghdad, Reuters reports.

Fallujah main hospital has reports on 32 civilians killed on Monday, with about 50 people who died, when offensive started on May 23. Islamic State militants took Fallujah in January 2014, when the group declared a caliphate in parts of the territory of Iraq and Syria. Despite Fallujah, Islamic State group holds Mosul.

Aid agencies are not inside the city and only help to those who can exit and reach refugee camps.

In the article on Fallujah, the USA Today publishes the statement of the Lieutenant general Abdelwahab al-Saadi, the commander of the offensive. He said the troops entered city with air support of the U.S. – led military coalition. The U.S. provides help and support of Iraqi forces with arms, surveillance, intelligence and advisers. As the USA Today explains, Iraqi Prime minister Haider al-Abadi talked to the televised speech to the Parliament, “the current phase” of the battle could end in two days.

The Iraqi military action started more than a week ago by cutting the Islamic State group in Fallujah with supplies and reinforcements. In Baghdad, suicide bombers killed at least 24 people and injured dozens on Monday, the USA today repots.



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