Iraqi forces regained control of the key city of Hit, while a “tough fight” remains in the Tigris River Valley, the spokesman for Operation Inherent Resolve said today.

“Last week in the Euphrates River Valley, Iraqi security forces tore Hit from ISIL’s grasp and gave it back to the Iraqi people. Hit is liberated,” Army Col. Steve Warren told Pentagon reporters in a teleconference from Baghdad.

Clearing Hit disrupts the ability of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant to move foreign fighters and supplies into the Euphrates River Valley, the colonel said, and it sets the stage for future offensive operations.

Warren highlighted the close coordination between the Iraqi army, the Iraqi counter terrorism service and Sunni tribal forces.

The operational achievements in the fight are a direct result of the coalition’s commitment to train and equip partner forces, Warren said.

In the Tigris River Valley, Iraqi forces repelled several coordinated attacks.

“Iraqi security forces continue to consolidate and improve their defensive positions while continuing to increase their combat power,” Warren said.

In other developments, U.S. forces on Sunday conducted a raid that targeted Suleiman Abd Shabib al-Jabouri, a ISIL military emir and war council member.

“His removal will degrade ISIL leadership’s network, and impact its ability to coordinate attacks and defend ISIL strong holds,” Warren said.

Warren said the U.S. Air Force’s B-52 Stratofortress bomber, which was deployed into theater earlier this month, conducted its first mission against ISIL Monday. It targeted an ISIL weapons storage facility in Qayyarah, Iraq.

The B-52 will conduct the “same type of precision strikes that we’ve seen for the last 20 months here in this theater,” the spokesman said. 

Coalition strikes destroyed Da’esh weapons storage facility near Qayyarah, Iraq, to disrupt terrorist operations.

The strikes were conducted as part of Operation Inherent Resolve, the operation to eliminate the Daesh terrorist group and the threat they pose to Iraq, Syria, and the wider international community. The destruction of Daesh targets in Syria and Iraq further limits the group’s ability to project terror and conduct operations.

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Featured Image – A B-52 Stratofortress from Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana, arrived at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, April 9. The United States is a part of a 19-nation air coalition that consists of numerous strike aircraft and the B-52s will bring a unique capability to the fight against Da’esh. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Terrica Y. Jones/Released)

Featured Media – CJTF Operation Inherent Resolve, YouTube