Wednesday, December 31, 2014

31 December 2014

In Haditha, where ISIL gunmen have for days been trying to capture the Haditha Dam, the Alous area was once again completely liberated today.

In Baghdadi, the humanitarian situation is critical with the continuing ISIL blockade that has not allowed any food or fuel supplies from reaching the town resulting in a huge rise in the prices of practically everything.

In Ramadi, parts of the Shjariya area of northeastern Ramadi are still being held by the gunmen. Very fierce clashes have been going on there since yesterday evening.
Ramadi city is still relatively calm, especially since the security forces deployed concrete barriers around the ISIL-controlled parts of the city.

In Fallujah, fierce battles have been ongoing in Garma, northeast of the city. Security sources are reporting that at least 55 gunmen have been killed in the fighting which is still in progress at this time. In Fallujah city, bombardment exchanges are continuing; 3 residents have been killed and 7 have been wounded in the residential districts.

Staff General Nawwal Al-Zoba'ee has today been appointed commander of the 5th Division, replacing Staff General Qassem Al-Dulaimi who has been transferred to Anbar Operations.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

30 December 2014

In Haditha, ISIL has launched its fifth consecutive attempt to penetrate into the town, but once again the fierce resistance by security forces has turned back the gunmen. In a phone contact the township's municipal leader has confirmed that security forces and tribal forces have thwarted the three-pronged attack: firstly, from the south across the river; the second, from the western areas of Haqlaniya and Birwana; in the third, clashes took place close to the Haditha Dam which ISIL gunmen have been trying to capture for five days, but coalition warplanes intervened, killing 33 of the gunmen, according to Anbar Operations sources.
The gunmen were able to seize partial control of the village of Alous, about 30 km from Haditha.

In Baghdadi, ISIL forces have cut all the bridges linking the eastern and western sectors of the town, after having seized 14 villages on the town's outskirts. Security sources have reported that coalition airstrikes have struck ISIL targets in the area.

In Fallujah, a medical source has confirmed that, between yesterday and this afternoon, 9 residents have been killed and 18 others wounded by random mortar fire during the continuing bombardment exchanges between the gunmen inside the city and security forces surrounding it. The mortar fire struck many of the city's residential districts, leaving women and children among the casualties. As 2014 draws to a close, there have been more than 5,000 casualties, killed or injured by the continuous bombardments in Fallujah.

In Ramadi, the city's residential districts have been relatively calm. In the rural areas around the city, security forces say that they have re-taken control of about 80% of those areas.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

25 December 2014

A security source at the Anbar Operations Command announced today that coalition warplanes have carried out a number of sorties and have attacked ISIL positions along the Iraqi-Syrian border. The source reported that at least 35 ISIL gunmen were killed. Military operations are now underway at the Iraqi-Jordanian border crossings, to prevent the gunmen from infiltrating into Iraq via Syrian territory.

In Baghdadi, security forces today launched a major operation aimed at liberating the rural areas across the river from the town. The forces are reported to have advanced and have killed at least 7 gunmen in the area.

In Hit and its surrounding areas, ISIL gunmen attempted today to seize control of the rural areas across the river from Hit (Kubaisa, Al-Dulab, and other riverside areas). Security forces supported by tribal fighters have been able to repel the attack.

In Ramadi, broad military operations have been underway today, with security sources saying that they have liberated large areas of the city, but they are being hampered by rooftop snipers.

In Fallujah, 7 gunmen were killed in a security forces attack at a bridge linking the city to the main Baghdad-Fallujah highway.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

24 December 2014

The Defense Minister, Dr. Khalid Al-Ubaidi, arrived in Anbar last night, making his way to the Ayn Al-Asad Military Base in Baghdadi. He has been supervising the ongoing military operations there since the early hours of this morning. He met with a number of tribal leaders in Baghdadi.
A military operation today, supported by Iraqi aircraft, liberated the Sin Al-Dheeb on the outskirts of the town. Seven ISIL gunmen were killed, according to a military source. Another operation targeted the Jubba village, southwest of Baghdadi, that is still being held by the gunmen. The Anbar local government has announced that these operations are being supervised by U.S. military advisers based at Ayn Al-Asad. Three Apache helicopters have also been deployed against ISIL targets in the area.

In Ramadi, a broad security operation by the Anbar Police Command, supported by army units and tribal fighters has been launched to liberate the only eastern/northeastern areas of Ramadi still controlled by ISIL. 23 gunmen have been reported killed in the fighting.

In Fallujah, intermittent but violent clashes have erupted when ISIL gunmen attempted to attack the area across the main highway. The city's general hospital has reported that 3 residents have been killed, including one child, and seven wounded by the continuing bombardment exchanges.

The new Anbar Governor, Suhaib Al-Rawi, told his fellow citizens in a press statement that the next few days will see the local security and tribal forces supplied with new weapons and munitions, and that new plans have been drawn up for the liberation of Anbar's territory through the cooperation of the central and local governments. Anbar Council sources are reporting that a 50,000-man force will be ready in a few days to combat the ISIL gunmen. Most of the force is composed of local tribal fighters.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

23 December 2014

On the political front, the Anbar Council today elected Suhaib Al-Rawi to be the new Anbar Governor, following an urgent meeting in Baghdad. He received 18 of the 30 votes representing the Anbar Council members. He vowed to be at the forefront of Anbar's defendants. He said that the central government in Baghdad will be approached during the coming week to establish a military force to combat ISIL.

In Baghdadi, ISIL has launched a fourth attack in about ten days on several fronts. The attack involved the use of mobile artillery driven by ISIL gunmen and included many heavy military vehicles. However, the attack was confronted by security forces, coalition warplanes, and tribal fighters. Sources have reported that 33 ISIL gunmen were killed in southwestern Baghdadi.

In Ramadi, the last region in northeastern Ramadi still under the gunmen's control has now been completely secured, with the involvement of army forces.

In Fallujah, 13 residents were killed, including women and children, and 7 were wounded in the continuing bombardment exchanges between yesterday and through today.

Meanwhile, ISIL is still preventing food and fuel supplies from reaching the areas it is blockading.

The Anbar Operations Command announced today that at least 130 new U.S. military advisers have arrived in Anbar at the Ayn Al-Asad military camp in Baghdadi in order to prepare new plans for retaking control of the province.

Monday, December 22, 2014

22 December 2014

ISIL tried once again today to seize Baghdadi, including the Ayn Al-Asad Base. The attack was launched from the west, but coalition warplanes, security forces, and tribal fighters were able to repel the attack, killing at least 13 of the ISIL gunmen.
In a simultaneous attack from the north and northeast, clashes are ongoing, including mortar attacks on some of the town's residential districts. Four civilians have been wounded and there has been significant structural damage.

In Haditha, there was also an ISIL attempt to penetrate into the town. A suicide bomber was killed as he tried to drive his booby-trapped vehicle into the town from the southwest.

In Hit, ISIL gunmen are still in control of the town. Security forces on the town's perimeter tried to assault the town from the south; there were clashes in the area, and coalition warplanes struck some of the gunmen's positions in the area. Security sources say that at least 33 gunmen were killed.

In Ramadi, the city has been relatively calm today, except for the ongoing clashes in its southern sector. There were also fierce battles in the rural areas to the north, as gunmen tried to once again re-take areas that have recently been liberated by security forces. In western Ramadi, it was announced today that the ISIL commander there, Abu Abdullah Al-Saddawi, has been killed.

In Fallujah, 4 residents were killed and 11 were wounded yesterday by the ongoing bombardment exchanges between security forces surrounding the city and the ISIL gunmen within it.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

20 December 2014

ISIL gunmen today attempted to assault the Baghdadi township west of Hit, where the Ayn Al-Asad military base is located. The gunmen did enter the areas around Baghdadi and into its southern sector where they seized a number of buildings and several vital positions. Coalition warplanes struck the bridge between Baghdadi and an outlying village in order to prevent the gunmen from crossing into Baghdadi. An officer of the 7th Division was killed in the heavy fighting. A source at the Anbar Command announced that French warplanes had taken part in attacking the gunmen's positions around Baghdadi and toward Hit. In other clashes, security forces killed 12 ISIL gunmen.

The gunmen also tried to seize the Malahma village in Al-Khalidiya, northeast of Ramadi. The gunmen did manage to advance a few kilometers into the area, and clashes and bombardment are  continuing.

In Falluja, the bombardment exchanges have killed one civilian and wounded 4 others in the city's residential districts.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

18 December 2014

In Haditha township, an ISIL 36-vehicle convoy attempted to penetrate into the town, but coalition warplanes attacked the convoy, killing most of the ISIL gunmen.

Meanwhile a clash at Haditha's southern entrance at Haqlaniya erupted when ISIL gunmen attacked, only to be faced by fierce resistance. The Haditha Municipal leader, Abdul-Hakeem Al Jughaifi, has stated that the gunmen were trying to reach the Haditha Dam, but this was also thwarted by coalition airstrikes. He also warned that the attempt was planned to seize the dam and blow it up.

In Ramadi, the southern districts are relatively calm, but there were heavy clashes in the city's northeastern sector. The gunmen had seized some parts of the area and laid mines along the access routes into the area. Military engineers assisted by local tribesmen have now cleared the mines. Explosives had also been planted at a number of mosques, but a major effort is underway to defuse those explosives.
Meanwhile Iraqi air support has killed three ISIL commanders in those areas.

In Fallujah, the level of clashes between security forces outside the city and ISIL gunmen within it has escalated. The city's general hospital announced today that 4 residents have been killed and 11 wounded, most of whom were women and children.

In Baghdadi which is still completely blockaded, reports say that U.S. military officers and advisers are helping, from the Ayn Al-Asad Base, in advising the security forces. Meanwhile, 3 small children have died because there is no more baby milk available in the town.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

16 December 2014

The Ramadi General Hospital announced today that it has received the dead bodies of small children who had been making their way on foot out of the Wafa'a district of western Ramadi into the surrounding desert areas, fleeing the ISIL presence there.
Sheikh Na'eem Al-Gu'oud, told RFI by phone that more than 5,000 Bu-Nimr tribal members are now surrounded by ISIL gunmen in the villages west of Ramadi, all the way to Hit. The gunmen are preventing anyone from entering or leaving those areas.
Sheikh Raf'i Abdul-Karim Al-Fahdawi, the leader of the Bu-Fahd tribe and the leader of the Anbar Awakenings, has confirmed that the weapons that have been received to arm the tribal fighters are defective.

Meanwhile in Haditha, an ISIL attack on the town is reported to have been repelled and a number of the gunmen have been killed, according to an Anbar Police source. A would-be suicide bomber was killed as he tried to penetrate into the township from the south.

The Police Commander also announced today that Ramadi is fully under the control of the security forces, denying all the rumors about the alleged ISIL advances into the city's districts. But security sources are saying that clashes have taken place in the city's southern districts.

Also today, an ISIL military commander and their Emir in western Ramadi, was killled in the 7km district. However, his name and nationality are still unknown.

In Fallujah, the general hospital announced today that at least 4 residents have been killed and 7 wounded, mostly women and children.

A broadly-based tribal meeting was held today in Amiriyat Al-Fallujah, to review the overall situation, especially the security situation. It renewed calls on the central government to provide the township with arms and ammunition, as it is being subjected daily to attempts by ISIL gunmen to overrun the town.

Monday, December 15, 2014

15 December 2014

In Baghdadi, ISIL forces have launched a three-front assault from the western, eastern, and northwestern fronts. The gunmen advanced into the areas around the town and seized a number of villages. However, Iraqi and coalition air support was able to delay the advance. Hundreds of mortar rounds have struck the town's residential districts, causing many residents to rush towards the remotest parts of the town. Meanwhile the gunmen are still blockading the town and are not allowing any food or fuel supplies into it.

In Ramadi, clashes and broad military operations have been underway, particularly in the Hawz district which is still being held by ISIL, and in the other southern sector districts. Details of the fighting are still unavailable.

The Anbar Police Commander, Gen. Kadhum Al-Fahdawi, confirmed today that ISIL forces have been trying during the past few days to make inroads into Ramadi; he also confirmed that more than 100 ISIL gunmen have been killed in the central districts of the city.

In Fallujah, mortar fire is still hitting a number of the city's districts.

In Amiriyat Al-Fallujah, in southernmost Anbar, ISIL gunmen have attempted to penetrate into the town, but they were confronted by fierce resistance by the defending tribal forces.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

13 December 2014

The Anbar Provincial Council held an emergency meeting today, during which it unanimously voted to relieve the Governor, Ahmed Khalaf Al-Dulaimi, of his administrative duties and sent him into retirement, for health-related reasons. The names of three candidates for the post were put forward, to be voted on tomorrow or the next day. The three candidates are Dr. Jassim Al-Halbousi, Engineer Arkan Khalaf Al-Tarmouz, and Suhaib Al-Rawi.

In western Ramadi, ISIL gunmen have seized control of the Wafa'a region, and they have now surrounded large numbers of army personnel and tribal fighters in the extreme western Ramadi area.
An ISIL gunman driving a Hummer detonated the vehicle near a military barrack in southwestern Ramadi. Three security personnel were killed and 16 others were wounded in the blast.

In Haditha, security forces have detonated a booby-trapped vehicle as it attempted to enter the town' s southern entrance. The attacker was also killed by security forces, but there were no civilian or security casualties.

Clashes have intensified today in Ramadi's southern sector following yesterday's ISIL attempts to advance into the southern districts.

There was also a broad security operation yesterday in Baghdadi by ISIL forces in the town's periphery where the Ayn Al-Asad military base is located. However, security forces supported by tribal fighters successfully repelled the gunmen.

In Hit, the situation remains unchanged, with security forces surrounding the town and unable to penetrate into the town.

In Fallujah, a large number of mortar rounds fell on the city yesterday, killing 3 civilians, one of whom was a child, and wounding 9 others.

The humanitarian situation in Anbar is at its worst, with many parts of the province surrounded and blockaded, and ISIL preventing any food supplies into these areas. Sources indicate that many people, particularly children and the elderly, are dying because of food, milk, and medical shortages.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

11 December 2014

Local police supported by army and security forces today launched a major military operation to assault Hit, but ISIL forces controlling the town responded with fierce resistance. The commander of a special forces regiment of the 7th Brigade, Brigadier Haytham Al-Juburi was killed in the fighting, as were at least 10 security forces personnel. Anbar Command sources also say that 53 ISIL gunmen were also killed. In this first attempt to penetrate into Hit, the joint forces were unable to advance into the town, but were able to tighten their positions along the town's perimeter.

Fierce clashes and battles took place today in Ramadi, in the rural tribal areas where the gunmen detonated a booby-trapped Hummer at a position close to the 6th Brigade in western Ramadi. A number of security personnel were killed by the blast which was followed by violent clashes. Brigadier Ihsan Ahmed, commander of the Rapid Response Regiment of the 8th Brigade in Ramadi, was killed when he attempted to advance into the northeastern sector of the regiment which is still surrounded by ISIL gunmen on its southern and western flanks.

Also today, ISIL forces tried to re-take large areas of the southern Hawz district and its adjacent districts. The security forces were able to partially repel the attack, but ISIL forces have achieved some advances into the area.

In Garma today, and since last night, has been the scene of the most violent clashes to date in many of its districts. We have no information regarding the progress or outcome of the clashes, which are still ongoing.

In Fallujah, a General Hospital source confirmed today that 3 residents have been killed and 7 have been wounded by mortar fire on the city's residential districts. 

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

10 December 2014

At 7:00 am this morning, ISIL forces launched an attack on the government complex in central Ramadi, but a source at the Anbar Police Command has announced that the attack was repelled and that 8 gunmen have been killed, including 3 Arab nationals.
At 13:00 today, ISIL forces advanced into and occupied large areas of the Hawz district in southwestern Ramadi. Meanwhile Iraqi air support, security forces, and coalition warplanes have attacked a number of ISIL positions in Ramadi's southern sector. An ISIL sniper, described as probably being an Australian national, was killed and 6 others were wounded.
The rural areas on the opposite side of the Euphrates were also attacked by ISIL forces, but tribal fighters from that area were able to thwart and repel the attack, according to the police source.

In Hit today, security and tribal forces are in complete control of the town's perimeter, and Iraqi aircraft have again struck targets in the town' Industrial District. Sources say that 13 gunmen have been killed in the action.

The Anbar Council has today once again called on the central government to provided arms and ammunition to the tribal fighters, stressing that unless the tribal forces are supplied with what they need this month, ISIL forces will consider that as an opportunity to launch further attacks, particularly in Ramadi.

In Fallujah, Dr. Ahmed Al-Shami, the senior resident at the General Hospital, has stressed that the hospital has not suffered any casualties from the bombardment exchanges, but he once again stressed that the hospital is facing major shortages of medical necessities and medical personnel.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

09 December 2014

For the third consecutive day, ISIL gunmen have again attempted to assault and take over the Anbar government complex in Ramadi. The assault came from three directions: north, south, and west. Security forces responded quickly and prevented the gunmen from penetrating the complex's environs. Eight ISIL gunmen have been reported killed in the action.

A second battle took place in the Hawz district with the gunmen attacking and advancing from the north and west, but security forces are still holding some parts of the district and its adjacent districts.

In Hit, security forces are still massively deployed around the town, and reconnaissance flights have been ongoing in apparent preparation for the expected major military operation on the town. The Industrial district in the town, believed to be the location of ISIL workshops producing booby-trapped vehicles and explosive devices, was bombed. The security command says that it needs more than 15,000 fighters in order to assault the town.

In the extreme northwestern Ramadi districts, clashes have been taking place between the gunmen and tribal forces earlier today, Iraqi air sources announced that their aircraft have struck 3 ISIL positions in those areas.

In Fallujah, clashes and bombardment exchanges have been continuing between the security forces on the city's perimeter and the ISIL gunmen still holding the city. The city's general hospital has announced that 2 residents have been killed and 13 wounded.

The humanitarian situation in Anbar has reached its most critical level, following the local government's declaration of bankruptcy. Many parts of the province have ben cut off and isolated by ISIL forces who have been preventing food and fuel from reaching these areas, particularly those that they do not fully control.

There are also critical medicine shortages in the province's hospitals. This is especially the case in Fallujah where the general hospital has declared that it has completely run out of medications.

Monday, December 8, 2014

08 December 2014

The most significant escalation today has been the major attack by ISIL gunmen against the government complex in Ramadi. Security forces, however, absorbed the attack which was launched at 7:00 this morning. By the time the clashes abated this afternoon, security forces had killed at least 22 of the gunmen, while Iraqi air support also struck positions occupied by ISIL forces.

ISIL gunmen have also launched a violent assault on the Hawz district of southwestern Ramadi. The clashes have been going on for more than five hours, with conflicting reports emerging about the actual situation there.

In Fallujah today, a preliminary casualty report indicates that 4 residents have been killed and 11 have been wounded by the ongoing clashes and mortar shells that have struck a number of the city's central and northern districts.

In Hit, security forces are still in control of the town's perimeter, while 14,000 volunteers are being trained at Ayn Al-Asad camp, where U.S. advisers are also present, according to Anbar Council sources.

Activity is increasing in Anbar, aimed at seeking a replacement for the Anbar Governor, Ahmed Al-Dulaimi, who was wounded last month while touring Birwana, near Haditha, and who is still undergoing treatment at a hospital in Amman, Jordan. The selection of a new governor is being thwarted by differences between the various political factions in the Province.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

04 December 2014

In Ramadi today, ISIL launched an attack on the southern sector, including the Fast Response Brigade Base in Hawz; security forces supported by tribal fighters repelled the attack but a number of security personnel were wounded, while 8 ISIL gunmen were killed. The clashes spread into other southern districts, but security sources say that they have re-established their control of the area, as Iraqi air support struck ISIL targets, killing at least 13 gunmen, according to the Anbar Command. Some ISIL vehicles and field equipment were also seized.

In the Tharthar area, security forces have been able to retake control of the highway to Baghdad.

In Fallujah, 6 mortar rounds today struck the General Hospital complex; there were no casualties but several hospital buildings were damaged.

In Hit, there are now massive troop concentrations around the town's perimeter, and reports indicate that the major military campaign is on the verge of being launched.

A source at the Anbar Council confirmed today that Iranian warplanes have attacked a number of ISIL positions in the eastern part of the Province.

The Council also affirmed today that Council members and a large number of tribal leaders will travel to Washington, D.C. within the next few days to meet U.S. military leaders and government officials. Among the matters to be agreed upon is the formation of a 'tributary' army consisting of more than 50,000 Anbar volunteers who will combat ISIL following the liberation of Anbar. Some 'Awakenings' leaders have been opposed to the creation of an independent Anbar army, similar to the Peshmarga forces in Iraqi Kurdistan.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

03 December 2014

In Kubaysa, at the southernmost part of Hit, coalition warplanes today targeted an ISIL convoy consisting of five vehicles and a fuel tanker. Sources say that at least 45 ISIL gunmen were killed in the raids. Following the raids, there were clashes around the town that is still partially controlled by security forces.

In Ramadi, the three-pronged security operation is ongoing in the western, southern, and northern sectors of the city. Security forces announced today that they have seized control of large areas of those areas, killing at least 56 gunmen, mostly on the northern front.

In Hit, Sheikh Na'eem Gu'oud of the Bu-Nimr clan threatened today that his clan would cease fighting ISIL if the central government in Baghdad does not provide assistance, particularly military assistance, to his tribesmen who have been fighting ISIL for nearly two months.

In Fallujah, an intensification of the clashes and random bombardment exchanges has killed or wounded at least 14 residents.

The areas east of Fallujah along the boundary with Salahuddin Province have been the scene of intermittent clashes. Security sources are saying that the clashes are still continuing.

In Haditha and Baghdadi, final preparations are underway to arm and prepare the tribal volunteer fighters at Ayn Al-Asad military base for the major operation aimed at liberating the whole area around the towns.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

02 December 2014

The Anbar Council and the Security Command announced today the start of a military operation on three fronts: the first was in the Hawz and surrounding southern districts of Ramadi; the second was in the city's western sector; and the third was in the city's northern sector. Security sources are reporting that the action has broadened the already ongoing operations in these sectors, and have announced that 23 ISIL gunmen have been killed in a security ambush in the Hawz area. On the northeastern front, security forces stated this afternoon that seven groups of gunmen were targeted and that more than 30 gunmen were killed as a result. Army and security forces have established checkpoints and observation posts in the area.

In Fallujah, the clashes and random bombardment exchanges have, according to the General Hospital, killed at least 7 residents, including 2 women, and wounded at least 13 others. 

In Hit township, security forces have reported that their operations, backed up by Iraqi air support have struck the town's Industrial District where ISIL forces have set up a weapons and equipment repair and production workshop. More than 10 gunmen were killed in the air raids. Meanwhile, forces are still massed around the town where all the surrounding villages have been liberated.

Monday, December 1, 2014

01 December 2014

ISIL gunmen have carried out attacks on a military barracks at the Al-Waleed border crossing with Syria. It is probably the last position that has not been captured by ISIL. Sixteen military personnel have been killed in the attack, including one officer. The position is part of the Rutba township that has beeen uder ISIL control for nearly six months. Iraqi and coalition aircraft have launched airstrikes on the area bordering both Syria and Jordan, targeting the gunmen's positions, with 31 gunmen reported killed.

In Ramadi, security forces announced today that ISIL gunmen have today launched a major surprise attack on three fronts: the first, in the northwestern sector, in an attempt by the gunmen to seize control of the Abu Risha area, but were repelled by tribal fighters who killed 3 of the gunmen; the second attack was on the southern sector in the Hawz district where previous clashes are still ongoing; the third attack was in the eastern sector in the areas along the Euphrates, but the security forces engaged the gunmen in fierce clashes and were able to spread their control and clear the roadside explosive devices on both banks of the river.

In Fallujah, gunfire and bombardment exchanges are continuing, with residential districts being hit indiscriminately. The city's General Hospital has reported that 4 residents have been killed and 11 wounded.

There were also clashes to the east in the areas along the boundary with Salahuddin Province. Coalition warplanes have been involved there but we do not yet have any details. The overall situation indicates an escalation by the security forces trying to recover control of those areas,

In Hit, security forces are still controlling the town's perimeter areas, while families are still evacuating the town following the previously announced intention to launch a major security operation supported by tribal forces, in order to liberate Hit town.