Iraqi Prime Minister, Haider al-Abadi, on Wednesday said Iraq would continue striking the Islamic State (IS) militants in neighbouring countries to protect its cities.
Abadi, who was in the city of Sulaimaniya in Iraq’s northern semi-autonomous region of Kurdistan, said the government would keep fighting IS.
“I respect the sovereignty of other states, and won’t hesitate to strike the positions of terrorists in the neighbouring countries.
“We will keep fighting them.
“I say, we want to protect Iraq and its citizens and we want cooperation with the neighbouring countries.
“In neighbouring countries are terrorists sending car bombs to Baghdad and other Iraqi cities to carry out terrorist acts,’’ Abadi said in a televised speech.
On Feb. 24, Abadi announced that he had ordered airstrikes against positions of IS militants inside Syria in retaliation for deadly bomb attacks in Baghdad.
“We are determined to chase terrorism that tries to kill our sons and citizens wherever it is located.
“We gave orders to the air force command to conduct airstrikes against the terrorist group in Husaybah and Albu Kamal inside Syrian territories since they were responsible for recent terrorist bombings in Baghdad,’’ he announced.
Abadi went to Kurdistan region on Tuesday after he made a surprise visit to the security forces.
He met with top military commanders in the battleground city of Mosul, just hours after the troops dislodged IS militants from the main government complex in the old Mosul city centre.
Abadi’s comment in Sulaimaniya came as the Iraqi security forces, backed by anti-IS international coalition, are conducting a major offensive to drive out IS militants from their last major stronghold in and around Mosul.