Smoke rises during clashes between joint troop of Iraqi army and Shiite Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) against the Daesh (ISIS) militants in Tal Afar, Iraq August 26, 2017. (REUTERS/Thaier Al-Sudani)
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Iraqi forces are about to take full control of Tal Afar, Daesh (ISIS)'s stronghold in northwestern Iraq, in a swift campaign against the outnumbered, exhausted militants, an Iraqi military spokesman said Saturday.The quick collapse of Daesh in Tal Afar, a breeding ground for extremist groups in Iraq, confirmed Iraqi military reports that the militants lack command and control structures in the areas west of Mosul.Up to 2,000 militants were believed to be defending Tal Afar when the U.S.-backed campaign to take back the city started on Aug. 20 . Tal Afar, which had a pre-war population of about 200,000, is the latest objective in the U.S.-backed war on Daesh following the recapture of Mosul after a nine-month campaign that left much of the city, the biggest in northern Iraq, in ruins.
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