A campaign kicked off on Tuesday (July 18th) to pursue fleeing "Islamic State of Iraq and Syria" (ISIS) elements that have taken refuge in areas along the Tigris river south of Mosul, the Ninawa Operations Command said.
The campaign is focused on the areas of Upper Zab, al-Shamsiyat and Qabr al-Abd village, north of Hamam al-Alil, following reports about the presence of ISIS elements who sneaked into these areas after their defeat in Mosul.
"The operation is part of a plan drawn up by our command in the wake of our huge victory in Mosul," command spokesman Brig. Gen. Firas Bashar Sabri told Diyaruna.
"The aim is to protect all liberated areas and establish security there with the participation and support of the local population," he said.
"We are co-ordinating with other military units and the local residents to hunt terrorists down and not allow them to form sleeper cells or secret hideouts," he added.
The campaign has so far netted "dozens of wanted Iraqis", Sabri said, adding that various weapons and explosive vests have also been seized.
"These carefully-planned operations send messages of reassurance to residents that their forces are working on creating a more secure environment for them and sparing their areas terrorist threats," he said.
Since July 12th, Iraqi forces have been engaged in a military operation to clear the village of Imam Gharbi near al-Qayyarah, south of Mosul, of ISIS militants.
The Iraqi government on July 10th announced the full liberation of Mosul from ISIS control.