CENTCOM has not confirmed the death of senior ISIS leader Abu Ala al-Afri following a statement from the Iraqi Defense Ministry indicating that a coalition airstrike based on prior intelligence had killed Afri near Mosul. Reports of senior ISIS casualties usually take time to confirm.
The prison break in Khalis that resulted in the escape of ISIS fighters was reminiscent of previous attacks by ISIS that replenished its ranks in 2012-2013.
The contest for the Baiji Oil Renery is accelerating as ISIS cut off supply routes previously used by the ISF and occupied positions within the facility.
During his current visit to Washington, the president of Iraqi Kurdistan, Masoud Barzani reiterated his desire for an independent Kurdistan. Similarly, the U.S. reiterated its desire for a “united, federal, and democratic Iraq,” signaling that it does not support Kurdish autonomy.
The provision in the House Armed Service Committee’s draft defense bill that would permit the U.S. to directly distribute arms to Iraq’s Sunni and Kurdish communities continued to generate negative reactions in Baghdad.
The Iraqi government has yet to launch major operations in Anbar. Meanwhile, ISIS is increasing the rate of its terrorist attacks in the capital.
ISW has changed the status of the border crossings at al-Waleed and Trebil to under watch.
A provision in the House Armed Services Committee draft Defense Authorization Bill has generated negative reactions in Iraq.
Prime Minister (PM) Haidar al-Abadi and Defense Minister Khalid al-Ubaidi have come under increasing pressure over the last three days.
As expected, the recent Iraqi-American cooperation that sidelined Iranian-backed Iraqi Shi’a militias has generated a push back from Iranian allies in Iraq.