Iraq needs more airstrikes to dislodge IS in Tikrit: officials




 
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March 16th, 2015  
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Topic: Iraq needs more airstrikes to dislodge IS in Tikrit: officials


Iraq needs more airstrikes to dislodge Islamic State militants from Tikrit, senior officials said on Monday, as the campaign to retake Saddam Hussein's home city stalled for a fourth day due to homemade bombs and booby traps. Iraqi security forces and mainly Shi'ite militia pushed into Tikrit last week but have struggled to advance against the militants who are holed up in a vast complex of palaces built when Saddam was in power. Government forces are in control of the northern Qadisiya district as well as the southern and western outskirts of the city, trapping the militants in an area bounded by the river that runs through Tikrit. The U.S.-led coalition has been conspicuously absent from the offensive, the biggest to be undertaken by Iraqi forces since Islamic State overran around a third of the country last summer including Tikrit.




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