Iraqi prime minister visits Kirkuk and launches major offensive against Islamic State remnants

Kirkuk, an Iraqi soldier gestures victory sign before the start of a major offensive against the Islamic State sleep cells in Kirkuk, June 2, 2020. Photo: Soran Mohammed


A major offensive, named Iraq Heroes, Victory of Sovereignty, to eradicate the Islamic State groups (IS) remnants was launched today in Kirkuk, with the unexpected visit of the Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafra al-Kadhimi to the city to closely observe the operation.

The offensive kicked of today, Tuesday at 4 a.m. and advanced along four different axes to cleanse an area of 738 square km between Kirkuk and Salahuddin province from the IS sleep cells.

KirkukNow reporter learned that the offensive is carried out by the Iraqi Rapid Response Forces, Iraqi Security Force, Iraqi Federal Police and the Popular Mobilization Forces, with the cooperation of the International Coalition warplanes as well as Iraqi Air Forces.  


Kirkuk, Iraqi forces are about to launch a major offensive against the Islamic State remnants between Kirkuk and Salahuddin, June 2, 2020. Photo: KirkukNow 

In the operation as of now, an explosive car and more than 30 bombs were blown up.

The offensive coincided with the unexpected visit of prime minister Kadhimi to Kirkuk, who has met with the commander of Kirkuk’s Joint Operation Command, Saad Harbiya, and other military commanders and forces.

KirkukNow reporter said that Kadhimi is overseeing the offensive.


Kirkuk, Mustafa al-Kadhimi, prime minister, is welcomed by Saad Harbiya, head of the Kirkuk’s Joint Operation Command at the Kirkuk’s airport. June 2, 2020. 

The offensive is happening after a series of attacks against the Iraqi security forces and civilians as well as burning grain crops in southern Kirkuk.

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