Tal Afar is now completely under Iraqi control. Although some militants continue to fight in the nearby village of Ayadiya, the main districts of the city have been recaptured. Col. Arkan Fadhil said that the lack of civilians helped speed up the process. With Tal Afar recaptured, security forces can now move on to the final cities under Islamic State rule.
It is unclear why there were fewer civilians than expected, but Tal Afar’s displaced residents are still arriving at refugee centers and are in need of the basic supplies.
Although Mosul was freed from Islamic State rule in July, there are still Yazidi children being held there. On Sunday, a seven-year-old Yazidi girl was freed from a family keeping her. The government has called on families to hand over these children immediately.
At least 162 people were killed and 14 were wounded:
In Baghdad, a bomb killed three people and wounded five more in Bayaa. Two people were killed and another was wounded by a car bomb in Abu Dsheer. A bomb in Jisr Diyala killed one person and wounded two more.
Eleven militants were killed and five were wounded in a strike in Hawija.
Security forces killed six militants in Baaj.
Shelling in Zawya left four militants dead.
In Kirkuk province, Peshmerga forces killed one militant and wounded another, who were planting a roadside bomb.
Read more by Margaret Griffis
- More Yazidi Victims Found in Mass Graves; 97 Killed in Iraq – December 16th, 2017
- Suicide Bomber Attacks Militia; 15 Killed in Iraq – December 15th, 2017
- Dozens of Sunnis Executed on Terror Charges; 53 Killed in Iraq – December 14th, 2017
- ISIS Attacks Troops, Mass Grave Found; 68 Killed in Iraq – December 13th, 2017
- UN Probes Right Abuses in Restive Tuz Khormato; Seven Killed in Iraq – December 12th, 2017