Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki called on militants in Anbar province to surrender as he vowed to regain control of the cities of Fallujah and Ramadi. Thousands of civilians have fled the fighting.
Government troops have turned to the terrorists' last bastion on the Syrian border, having already recaptured 90 percent of Iraqi land from IS. At the same time, Baghdad was rekindling conflict with the country's Kurds.
For two weeks now, Iraqi troops have advanced against the IS-held city of Fallujah. Militarily speaking, victory appears to be in sight. But new challenges await.
The "Islamic State" miliant group has "shot and killed" civilians fleeing Fallujah, said the Norwegian Refugee Council. Around 50,000 civilians are trapped in the city center, according to Iraqi officials.
Fallujah hopes to follow in Tikrit's footsteps as the latter rebuilds. Both cities suffered under "Islamic State" (IS) rule and the revenge of Shiite militias who liberated them. Judit Neurink reports from Tikrit.
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