U.S.- and coalition-backed local forces continue the fight against Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant fighters in the push toward Mosul in Iraq and the isolation of Manbij in Syria, Operation Inherent Resolve spokesman Army Col. Christopher Garver said on Wednesday.
Speaking live via videoconference from Baghdad, Garver offered condolences on behalf of the coalition to the families and loved ones of those killed and injured in the bombing of the Karrada district in Baghdad July 4.
“We stand with the people of Iraq and Syria and are resolved to defeat Daesh and liberate both countries from this gang of thugs and murderers that have killed and injured so many,” the colonel said before updating the press on OIR operations.
Daesh is another term for ISIL.
Transitioning in Fallujah
Beginning with operations in Iraq, Garver said that in Fallujah Iraqi security forces continue to transition control of the liberated city from the Iraqi army, federal police and the Counter-Terrorism Service inside the city to the hold force — a combination of police and Anbari tribal fighters enrolled in the Popular Mobilization Forces program.
“Elements of five Iraqi army divisions are continuing security operations in the suburbs around Fallujah. Transition to the hold force is ongoing and it is on an Iraqi timeline,” he said, “but a few units have already moved from Fallujah to other locations. The last coalition strike into Fallujah in support of forces clearing the city was June 29.”
In northern Iraq, the colonel said, shaping operations continue in preparation for the eventual liberation of Mosul.
ISF fighters continue maneuvering toward Qayyarah along two axes, Garver said.