Baghdad (AsiaNews) - The Iraqi armed forces are in "full control" of the city of Ramadi, which since last May has been in the hands of the Islamic state (IS, or Isis, or Daesh).
The city, of Sunni majority, is almost 100 km from Baghdad and is an important hub for communications between the militias and the Syrian area of Iraq under IS control.
The spokesman for the governor of Anbar (province of Ramadi) has, however, cautioned against decalring victory, because there are still several pockets of resistance, although "very weak".
Ramadi had fallen to the IS last May and it took several months to prepare an assault by Iraqi troops. It is thought that there were at least 400 IS militants to defend the city, who are now suspected to have fled to the northeast, that is towards Mosul, Iraq's second city and de facto IS capital.
The Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said that the army will move quickly to regain Mosul, conquered with great ease by IS in June 2014.
A US-led coalition has been deployed against IS for a year. But results have only begin to be seen in recent months, since Russia at the invitation of Syria, began to take part in air strikes on IS positions and against the supply lines of troops and weapons and oil sales of Islamic militias. Another major contribution to the fight against IS is that of the Kurdish peshmerga in Syria and Iraq.
According to the IHS Jane's specialized institute in London, in recent months IS has lost 14% of the territory it once controlled.