On Tuesday, a U.S. general said that “Kurdish independence is on a trajectory where it is probably not if but when.” Lieutenant General Vincent Stewart is the head of the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency. He went on to say that if the Kurds and the federal government in Baghdad do not reach some kind of agreement, it will lead to instability and possibly conflict. Kurdish parties are planning to hold an independence referendum in October.
Italy has deployed 500 troops to guard the Mosul Dam, which is being repaired by Italian workers. They join 1,400 Italian troops already in Iraq.
A new floating bridge was built on the Tigris River in Mosul. Such bridges were previously constructed across the river to replace the five bridges that were destroyed during operations against the Islamic State militants. Recent flooding forced their removal.
In Erbil, the first internationally sanctioned soccer game since 2013 took place. Security threats had forced a ban on the games for the last four years. Two Iraqis competed, and the game ended in a draw.
The Islamic State militants are apparently moving their Iraqi headquarters to Hawija as the recapture of Mosul becomes imminent.
At least 170 were killed and three were wounded:
In Baghdad, a bomb wounded two policemen.
Twenty militants were killed in Qaim.
Airstrikes and other operations left 34 militants dead in western Anbar province.