IRAQ-CONFLICT
Iraqi soldiers raise their weapons as they cheer on the outskirts of the city of Tikrit as they prepare to launch a military operation to take control of the city from ISIS on March 10, 2015.  Ahmad al-Rubaye—AFP/Getty Images

Iraqi Troops and Shi‘ite Militias Have Retaken Large Areas of Tikrit From ISIS

Mar 11, 2015

After a week of intense fighting, Iraqi and Shi‘ite forces have retaken major parts of Tikrit — a strategically vital city in Iraq's Sunni Triangle — from ISIS. Iranian military officials were also reportedly involved in the city's recapture.

The battle, involving over 30,000 Iraqi soldiers and allied Shi‘ite militia, was the largest government operation to date and may be a prelude to recapturing Mosul, the largest city under ISIS control, the New York Times reports.

newsletter
The Brief NewsletterSign up to receive the top stories you need to know right now. View Sample

The U.S. was notably absent in direct military offensives in Tikrit, with some officials articulating unease about the central role of Shi‘ite militias and the Iranians in the recapture of Tikrit.

The Iraqi Prime Minister's spokesperson Rafid Jaboori told the New York Times that the U.S., along with Kurdish forces, would play “a significant role” in retaking Mosul, adding that the U.S. and Iran shared an overarching objective of crushing ISIS.

Meanwhile, in northern Syria, U.S. air strikes have enabled Kurdish forces to reclaim dozens of ISIS-controlled villages, the U.S. Central Command reported.

[NY Times]

Read next: Why the Fight Against ISIS Has to Go Through the Cities

Listen to the most important stories of the day.

All products and services featured are based solely on editorial selection. TIME may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website.