Iraqi military forces have plans to launch a cross-border operation to fight against terrorists on the territory of Syria, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Abadi said Sunday.
“The situation in Syria remains a real challenge and we are focused on finding a solution. We have gone from fighting terrorism in Iraq to fighting terrorism in Syria,” Abadi told reporters during his weekly press conference, as quoted by the Rudaw news agency.
Abadi noted that the plans were discussed on Saturday with Iraqi military commanders, stressing that Iraq did not intend to violate any country’s sovereignty.
“Our project has developed from fighting terror in Iraq to fighting terror in the region…. [But] we do not want to exceed our limits, and we will not transgress those of other countries,” the prime minister said.
Abadi admitted that Daesh* terrorists were still present in some parts of the country but vowed to eliminate them.
Abadi declared the end of the country’s fight against Daesh last December after Iraqi troops had re-established complete control over the country’s border with Syria.
Daesh had kept Iraq under its control for several years, beginning in 2014, after seizing Mosul, the country’s second-biggest city, and making it the terrorist group’s so-called capital in Iraq.
In the summer of 2017, Iraqi forces regained control over the city, while later in November, over the town of Rawa, the last Daesh stronghold in the country.