Iraq’s Ministry of Defence has signed a contract with the US and France to import advanced weapons and enhance the quality of its artillery, the state-run Iraqi News Agency (INA) reported on Sunday. The report quoted Major General Abd Al-Ardawi as explaining that advanced artillery systems have proven effective in the ongoing operations against the Daesh elements remaining in Iraq.
“The state continues to develop weapons for the security services in importing cannons that target the enemy at long range,” said Ardawi. “These are effective n battle, much more so than aircraft and hand-held guns. The import of new weapons will be part of our agreements with European countries.”
At its peak in 2014, Daesh controlled about 40 per cent of Iraqi territory and a third of Syria in the self-styled “caliphate”. Although the Iraqi government declared victory over Daesh on 9 December 2017, cells remain active in parts of the country and carry out sporadic attacks.
On Saturday, Iraqi security forces including the Popular Mobilisation Forces militia launched a military operation to pursue Daesh militants in the northern Salahuddin province.
The Joint Operations Command launched the second phase of ‘Operation Solid Will‘ in Anbar province last month. The first phase conducted in late March lasted three days, resulting in the destruction of nineteen Daesh lairs and six tunnels across Salahuddin, Anbar and Nineveh provinces.