According to al-Masdar intel, the Iranian General Qassem Suleimani has been deployed to spearhead and finalize the Iraqi Army’s campaign to capture Fallujah from the Islamic State.
The picture above reportedly shows him earlier today in the Hashd operations room with commanders of several Iraqi paramilitary groups.
Meanwhile, the Iraqi Army and Iraqi Air Force jointly bombarded Fallujah overnight; shortly after, Iraqi ground troops advanced in the countryside surrounding the ISIS-held city.
A map roughly indicating today’s military gains can be seen here.
Qassem Suleimani is no stranger to leading offensives in foreign countries; in October 2015, he masterminded an offensive in southern Aleppo which saw government forces capture some 50 villages and towns from Islamist insurgents.
In total, upwards of 20,000 Iraqi troops and pro-government paramilitary fighters are now mobilized for the Fallujah campaign; their forces vastly outnumber ISIS militants in the city.