02:22 GMT03 August 2021
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    Military Operation to Retake Mosul From Daesh (225)

    The northern Iraqi city of Mosul, currently occupied by Daesh terrorist group will need to feel the effect of political reforms in order to heal after its liberation from Daesh, experts told Sputnik on Friday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik), Alexander Mosesov — Mosul, the country's third largest city, has been in the hands of Daesh since 2014 and is now being liberated by Iraqi Armed Forces and Kurdish Peshmerga fighters with aerial support of the US-led international coalition.

    Daesh still controls the city, its outskirts and territories to the North and to the West of the city. According to the experts, political reforms should be implemented for Mosul and the whole region to help it heal from the devastating effect of Daesh's presence in the country.

    Necessary Steps

    "As far as Iraq is concerned Baghdad will have to find a way to recalibrate the political system — both locally in Mosul but also at the national level to ensure all the country's ethnic and sectarian constituencies are properly represented," Alison Pargeter, senior research fellow at the UK Royal United Services Institute (RUSI), told Sputnik.

    Iraq is populated mostly by Arabs with Kurds being the largest minority. More than 90 percent of the population adhere to Islam, around 40 percent of them are Sunni and 50 percent — Shia.

    The country's Sunnis have been complaining about Shia dominance in the country's political system particularly with southern Iraq and the capital Baghdad being mostly Shiite-populated.

    "One of the reasons why ISIS [Daesh] was able to expand in 2014 was that it could play on the grievances of Iraqi Sunnis who had been marginalized by the sectarian policies of Nouri Maliki [former Iraqi Prime Minister]. Indeed Iraq has to find a way to move beyond sectarian and ethnic politics if it is to succeed as a unified state," Pargeter said.

    Mehdi Dehnavi, global security analyst with IndraStra Global think tank, told Sputnik that the existing political situation in Iraq is favorable for Daesh.

    "Iraq will certainly defeat the Islamic State, but in the military field. But we should not forget that ISIS is a way of thinking, as long as democratic values are not in place, there is a possibility of growth and further rising of the Islamic State [Daesh]," Dehnavi said.

    Daesh Out of Iraq

    "I think ISIS will be forced out of Iraq and will lose the territory it controls there by the end of 2017. Although the fight will be hard, Iraqi forces are advancing faster than expected in the Mosul operation," Pargeter said.

    The success and the pace of advancement in Mosul have raised talks on liberation of Syria's Raqqah.

    On Thursday, French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault said an attack on the jihadist stronghold of Raqqa needs to be prepared after the advance to retake Mosul, mirroring a similar statement by US presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

    "Overall, regional countries must work together, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Russia and the United States to win the fight," Dehnavi said, noting that any help from Western powers to terrorist groups should be cut immediately.

    Alison Pargeter noted, however, that even with Daesh militants driven out of Iraq, the terrorist threat will still remain.

    "ISIS is unlikely to be wiped out of Iraq entirely. The group's remnants are likely to engage in more guerrilla style tactics, launching attacks in Baghdad and elsewhere," Pargeter said.

    The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

    Military Operation to Retake Mosul From Daesh (225)


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