(By Estera Popowska)
In a what poses a serious setback for Iraqi government campaign to retake the desert terrain from Islamic State (IS), the notorious militants attacked the capital of Iraq's vast Anbar province on multiple fronts on Friday, seizing two areas on the city outskirts, Reuters reported.
Reuters cited security officials and a hospital source as saying IS militants deployed vehicle and suicide bombs to tear through Iraqi government lines north of the city of Ramadi overnight before attacking on foot.
Meanwhile, Iraqi head of Anbar's provincial council, Sabah Karhout, reportedly called on Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to send urgent military reinforcements and supplies to fighters, saying they were running low on ammunition.
On Tuesday Abadi reportedly visited Anbar and declared the start of the operation to liberate the Sunni Muslim heartland, seeking to build on a victory over Islamic State last week in the city of Tikrit.
However, a police source in Ramadi reportedly said early on Friday the insurgents had taken half of the Albu Faraj area, and provincial council member Athal al Fahdawi later said it had been overrun completely.
The Islamic State controls swathes of Syria and Iraq, last year declaring a caliphate across the territory(Source: Reuters)