BAGHDAD: Iraqi army has arrested a group of ISIS fighters when they tried to escape from the fallen city of Ramadi after shaving their beards and dressing up as women.
“The terrorists had shaved their beards and dressed as women in a bid to fool our forces and escape the liberated city of Ramadi. However, they were all arrested before escaping the city,” the Iraqi security command was quoted as saying by ARA News.
The Iraqi army announced on Tuesday the “full liberation” of Ramadi city, capital of Anbar province, from ISIS militants.
Dozens of ISIS jihadis are believed to be stranded inside Ramadi after the Iraqi troops imposed their control over the city, the report said.
The Iraqi forces raided several neighbourhoods across the city looking for ISIS militants, a local source was quoted as saying.
“The militants who remained in the city are now trying to escape at any cost in order to avoid falling in the hands of the government forces,” the source said.
“At least nine ISIS jihadis were detained on Wednesday while trying to flee the security checkpoints of the Iraqi forces in Ramadi suburb. They were all dressed as women,” the source added.
Backed by the US-led coalition’s airstrikes, Iraqi army forces have been engaged in fierce battles with ISIS militant fighters in Ramadi and its suburbs over the last few weeks.
“Our forces have pushed Daesh (ISIS) militants out of the city’s outskirts. Ramadi is now under the full control of the army,” Iraqi central command said.
The Iraqi army had declared the liberation of Ramadi from ISIS earlier in December. However, the militant group fought back and regained several districts across the city after renewed clashes with Iraqi army troops, where dozens of fighters were reported dead on both sides.
ARA News is an independent press agency reporting on local developments across Rojava, Kurdistan Region, Syria, Iraq and Turkey.