Iraq PM: IS defeated from a military perspective

Iraq’s prime minister has announced the defeat of ISIL “from a military perspective” but says he will only declare final victory once security forces have eliminated the extremists from the desert.
Rawa, the last remaining town under ISIL’s control, was captured by Iraqi forces on Friday, signalling the collapse of the group in Iraq after it overran much of the country in 2014.
“From a military perspective, we have ended the presence of Daesh in Iraq,” Mr Al Abadi said while addressing a weekly news conference. “God willing we will announce very soon after the end of the purification operations victory over Daesh in Iraq.”
Al Abadi said the final battle against ISIL would take place in the desert of western Anbar, after which he would announce victory against the group.
Referring to Baghdad’s ongoing row with Iraq’s semi-autonomous Kurdish region, Mr Al Abadi said political disagreements in the country “will pave the way for ISIL fights to carry out attacks”.
“I call on our Kurdish brothers to avoid fighting,” he said.

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