A top commander serving at the Iraqi volunteer forces warned of Saudi attempts to bring a large-scale operation for retaking the city of Fallujah to a halt in order to allow the Daesh (ISIL) terrorists to flee the city, now fully besieged by the Iraqi forces.
In an interview with the Tasnim News Agency, Abu Hashem Fanian al-Welayi, commander of Sayyid al-Shohada Battalions, a main wing of the Popular Mobilization Units or Hashid al-Shaabi, said reports suggest that Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to Iraq is trying to buy time for saving members of the Daesh terrorist group that are stuck in the beleaguered city of Fallujah.
The Saudi envoy seems to have asked the Baghdad government for a 36-hour ceasefire in order to open exit routes for the Daesh terrorists and let them flee Fallujah, he explained, noting that a lot of foreign nationals from the Arab states are in the city.
More than 300 Saudi women are inside Fallujah, al-Welayi added.
He further seriously called on Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi not to postpone the operation for retaking the city and to flush out the terrorists once and for all.
The prime minister has unveiled plans for an operation to enter Fallujah city center from several directions within the next 48 hours, the commander said on Friday.
Earlier, the Iraqi army said it has cut off the whole access routes to Fallujah that Daesh terrorists used for logistic support.
Led by the elite counter-terrorism service (CTS), Iraq’s best trained and most seasoned fighting unit, the Iraqi army entered Fallujah on May 30 in a major offensive that began a week earlier.
In January 2014, Fallujah, 50 km (30 miles) west of Baghdad, became the first Iraqi city to fall under the control of the terrorists, six months before they declared a caliphate over territory seized in Iraq and Syria.