The battle for Tal Afar has begun. In a televised speech announcing the offensive overnight, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said the jihadists had the choice between “surrender or die.” Iraqi ground forces have begun the operation to retake Tal Afar today. The Turkmen city is the last major city in northwestern Iraq controlled by ISIS.
Odd news as a group of gunmen on Friday attacked the headquarters of a Malaysian oil firm in southeastern Iraq, accusing the company of causing earthquakes in the area. The incident occurred overnight at a protection point belonging to the Petronas oil company which operates in the Gharraf oil field located north of Nasiriyah after a 4.4 earthquake hit the area last week.
Lastly, some good news for Emad Mishko Tamo, the 12-year-old Yezidi boy who has finally been reunited with his family in Canada on Thursday after being rescued from ISIS three years following his abduction. The boy met his mother at the airport in a tearful reunion. Tammo’s mother discovered her son was alive a month ago when footage of the boy emerged on social media after Iraqi security forces rescued him in Mosul.