by Staff Writers
Baghdad (AFP) April 13, 2017
The rules of engagement governing US-led strikes against the Islamic State group have not been changed under President Donald Trump's administration, a commander said on Thursday.
After taking office in January, Trump ordered the development of a "new plan" to defeat IS, and called for recommendations on changing rules of engagement and "policy restrictions" that go beyond the requirements of international law.
"We still have the same rules of engagement; those authorities were delegated before any change in administration," Brigadier General Rick Uribe, a senior commander in the US-led coalition against IS, told journalists in Baghdad.
"We have not changed our procedures due to a change in... administration," said Uribe, who emphasised that the coalition carefully reviews potential targets in order to avoid civilian casualties.
Despite Trump's vows to increase the pace of action against IS and his assertion that he supports killing the families of militants, current efforts against the jihadists largely mirror those in place under his predecessor Barack Obama.
Coalition strikes have come in for criticism in recent weeks after Iraqi officials said that scores of civilians were killed in west Mosul.
The coalition is now investigating a March 17 strike it said it carried out in an area where civilian casualties were reported, and Belgium -- a member of the coalition -- is also probing whether its warplanes were involved in civilian deaths.
IS overran large areas north and west of Baghdad in 2014, but Iraqi forces backed by US-led strikes and other support have since regained much of the territory they lost.
Iraqi forces launched a major operation to recapture Mosul -- the last IS-held city in the country -- in October, retaking its eastern side before setting their sights on its smaller but more densely populated west.
On Thursday, Uribe emphasised that even after the recapture of Mosul, the war against IS -- which also holds territory in Kirkuk province and in western Iraq -- will not be over.
"Just because we're done in Mosul doesn't mean Daesh is done in Iraq", although "it'll be a severe blow", Uribe said, using an Arabic acronym for IS.
Baghdad (AFP) April 11, 2017
The Islamic State group now controls less than seven percent of Iraq, down from the 40 percent it held nearly three years ago, a military spokesman said Tuesday. Iraqi forces backed by US-led air strikes and other support are now battling IS inside second city Mosul, after retaking much of the other territory the jihadists had seized. "Daesh controlled 40 percent of Iraqi land" in 2014, ... read more
The Long War - Doctrine and Application
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement|