Lebanon army raids Syrian camps after blasts
IEDs which are particularly nasty to try to clear,” said Pentagon spokesman Captain Jeff Davis.
Carter added it was important the Iraqi government investigates alleged human rights abuses carried out by security forces against some civilians as they tried to flee the city.
The US-led anti-ISIS coalition’s focus now shifts north, where the ultimate goal is to recapture Mosul, the extremists’ main Iraq stronghold.
The coalition is helping Iraqi troops move north from Baiji towards the town of Qayyarah, which lies around 35 miles (60 kilometers) south of Mosul on the banks of the Tigris river.
Abadi had already declared victory in Fallujah on June 17 after ISIS defenses collapsed, with Iraqi forces facing only limited resistance in subsequent clearing operations.
The fighting to get into Fallujah was initially fierce, particularly on the southern side, and Iraqi forces were supported by more than 100 US-led coalition air strikes.
“To some extent once (Iraqi troops) got through the hard candy shell and into the chewy center, things went much more quickly,” Davis said.
“It was really a heavy fight along the frontline but once they penetrated in it seemed to go very quickly.” Davis said the recapture of Fallujah would “significantly” help the security situation in Baghdad, where ISIS fighters thought to have come from Fallujah have carried out a string of bomb attacks in recent weeks.
“The loss of Fallujah will further deny ISIS access to a province that is critically important to its overall goals,” he said.—Agencies BEIRUT—Lebanese troops raided makeshift refugee camps near a predominantly Christian village on the border with Syria on Tuesday a day after two waves of suicide attacks.
“We are worried that there are more terrorists, so the Lebanese army is searching the area,” said Bashir Matar, mayor of Al-Qaa, which lies in a hilly border area shaken by violence since the civil war erupted in Syria in 2011.
Eight suicide bombs rocked the Christian Lebanese border town on Monday, killing five people and injuring more.
The wave of attacks came as the latest in recent violent spillovers from the five-year old Syrian civil war raging on the other side of the border.
Although no official claim of responsibility has been taken, Lebanese security forces believe it was the work of IS.
Backup and extra security was provided by the army overnight, in an effort to prevent any more attacks on the town.
The bombings occurred in two waves, one occurring 18 hours after the other. The first killing five and wounding 19, while the other wounding dozens.—Agencies