The Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) have made rapid gains in the imperative industrial city of Baiji that sits above the Salahaddeen Governorate’s provincial capital of Tikrit, capturing the Industrial Area yesterday after days of violent firefights over the last 4 days. With the capture of the Industrial Area in Baiji, the ISF has reached the city-center; this is a significant loss for the Islamic State of Iraq and Al-Sham (ISIS), as they once enjoyed the luxury of a buffer-zone north of Tikrit.
ISIS is on the verge of retreat at the Baiji Oil Refinery due to the heavy besiegement by the ISF paratroopers that arrived last month in the northern part of the city. According to a military source, ISIS has suffered significant losses at the Oil Refinery, including a field commander killed by the ISF’s barrage of artillery shells. If ISIS cannot hold onto the Baiji Oil Refinery, the ISF will be able to impose its will on the rest of the militant positions in the area because they will be exposed in the to air force bombardments.