With help from US Special Forces Iraqi troops have surrounded Islamic State (ISIS) militants in the area of Hussaibiyah in eastern Ramadi, said an Anbar provincial official on Friday.

“A special US force has arrived at the Ayn al-Asad Airbase in western Anbar to do their part in retaking areas still held by ISIS,” Ibrahim Fahdawi, head of Khalidiya district security committee told Rudaw.

The force’s main duty is to protect Iraq’s borders with Syria and Jordan from ISIS militant infiltration, Fahdawi explained.

Iraqi troops retook Ramadi from ISIS in late December but have been since held down by militants in Hussaibiyah and other districts.

Fahdawi believes that the US force will support the Iraqi soldiers and prevent ISIS from sending reinforcements to retake Rawa, Qaim and Ana in western Anbar.

Days after Iraqi army declared Ramadi free from ISIS control, US Army Captain Chance McCrew told reporters in Baghdad there were still several hundred militants inside the city in the direction of Fallujah.

A Shiite militia official told Rudaw that booby traps and bombs together with the area’s population density are the reason for the army’s slow progress against the remaining militants in the area.

Read more at Rudaw