A senior Iraqi military commander said on Sunday that it will take a few days to fully dislodge al-Qaeda-linked fighters from two key western cities.
Lt. Gen. Rasheed Fleih, who leads the Anbar Military Command, told the state television that “two to three days” are needed to push the militants out of Fallujah and parts of Ramadi.
“The quiet and safe life that is sought by the Anbaris will not be completely restored before few hours or two to three days, God willing,” Gen. Fleih said.
Residents said it has been quiet since Saturday night in Fallujah, where militants still control the centre of the city. Sporadic clashes took place on Sunday in and around Ramadi.
The Islamic State in Iraq and Levant has seized control of Fallujah and Ramadi, the capital of Iraq’s Anbar province.
Also on Saturday, ISIL claimed responsibility for a suicide car bombing in a Shiite-dominated neighbourhood in Lebanon.