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Twelve ground and air strikes in Syria and 22 in Iraq, conducted by the United States-led coalition against the Islamic State, targeted the terrorist organization’s lucrative oil and natural gas infrastructure and other sensitive assets on June 22nd, according to a press release by the United States Central Command.
A strike surrounding Mosul, Iraq destroyed ISIS’ ministry of oil headquarters, along with tunnel entrances and vehicles.
"Near Mosul, eight strikes struck six separate [ISIS] tactical units, an [ISIS] ministry of oil headquarters, and an [ISIS] factory and destroyed three ISIL vehicles, two ISIL weapons caches, 10 [ISIS] assembly areas, two [ISIS] command and control nodes, and an [ISIS] tunnel entrance,” the release said.
So far, one-third of Fallujah, the first Iraqi city to fall to ISIS in January 2014, has been cleared of the terrorist group’s fighters due to the efforts of the Iraqi government and its supporters, according to spokesman Matthew Allen from the U.S. Department of Defense.
"The rest of the city remains contested and we will continue to support the government of Iraq in eliminating ISIL from Fallujah," Allen added, according to Al Jazeera. "[The battle] has been and will continue to be a difficult fight.”
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Fallujah’s oil facilities were recaptured earlier in June.
In Baghdad, attacks against oil assets have been ramping up in response to the slow-moving success of the Fallujah offensive.
Twenty-four people perished from Islamic State-claimed twin bombings in the Iraqi capital earlier this month, two weeks after strategic military activity that was designed to repatriate Fallujah and save its residents.
The Iraqi military’s offensive against ISIS-controlled Falluja began on May 23rd, after the hardline Sunni group’s forces launched a string of sectarian attacks in Shiite districts of Baghdad. In early June, troops encircled and besieged the city in preparation of advancement inside the occupied territory, which began soon after.
By Zainab Calcuttawala for Oilprice.com
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Zainab Calcuttawala is an American journalist based in Morocco. She completed her undergraduate coursework at the University of Texas at Austin (Hook’em) and reports on…