Last updated: November 21, 2017

Iraq’s Fallujah op slowed by civilians, IS resistance

Iraqi forces on the southern outskirts of Fallujah on June 1, 2016 during fighting against the Islamic State groupAfter a week of shaping operations aimed at sealing the siege of Fallujah, which lies just 50 kilometres (30 miles) west of Baghdad, elite forces launched a new, more aggressive phase on Monday morning. Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said concern for the estimated 50,000 civilians the United Nations has said IS was using as human shields was slowing progress. "It would've been possible to end the battle quickly if protecting civilians wasn't one of the foundations of our plan," he told commanders in comments broadcast by state television.



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