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Fleeing Islamic State Trucks Bombed From Air

Sky News logo Sky News 01/07/2016
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A convoy of nearly 800 Islamic State vehicles has been destroyed from the air as it attempted to flee the Iraqi city of Fallujah, officials say.

Hundreds of trucks, minibuses and cars were hit by missiles after Fallujah was wrested from IS by Iraqi forces on Sunday.

The city, west of Baghdad, had been in the militant group's control for more than two years.

Footage released by Iraq's Ministry of Defence showed many of the bombings.

In some of the video, militants can be seen running from trucks seconds before missiles land.     

The strikes - which Iraqi authorities said took place from Wednesday to Thursday - added to what was already a major defeat for the jihadists.

Iraq's Joint Operations Command said the country's forces destroyed 603 IS vehicles.

Meanwhile, the Pentagon estimated that coalition strikes hit at least 175. Those figures could not be independently confirmed.

iraqi forces attack isis convoy outside fallujah © Other iraqi forces attack isis convoy outside fallujah "Over the last two days, the Iraqi security forces and the coalition conducted strikes against two large concentrations of (IS) vehicles and fighters," Pentagon spokesman Matthew Allen told the AFP news agency.

Iraq's Joint Operations Command spokesman Yahya Rasool said commandos had also seized large quantities of weapons and ammunition.

Iraqi forces retook full control of Fallujah, 30 miles west of Baghdad, after a vast operation that was launched in May.

After tough battles to breach IS defences in south Fallujah, elite Iraqi forces conquered the rest of the city with relative ease.

They took full control of the city on Sunday after IS fighters abandoned the Jolan neighbourhood and retreated to rural areas to the west.

The strikes appear to spell the end of fixed IS positions in eastern Anbar province.

They further shrink the size of the "caliphate" the group proclaimed over large parts of Iraq and Syria two years ago.

Iraqi forces are now training their sights on Mosul, IS's de facto Iraqi capital.

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