Iraq's Joint Operations Command today denied the existence of a US military base near the Tal Afar district in the northwest of the country.
This came in a recorded statement to the spokesman of the Joint Operations Command, Brigadier General Yahya Rasool Abdullah, in which he said:
There is no US military base within the military sector of Tal Afar, and the participation of coalition forces and US forces is limited to air support and advice, and the sharing of intelligence.
On Tuesday, Lieutenant Colonel Mahdi Abdul Wahid Al-Khafaji, the head of the military heavy military unit, told the Anadolu Agency that a US base had been established in Zammar, north of Tal Afar, in an effort to hinder Daesh cells in the country.
He added that engineering and technical teams, foreign and local, are working day and night, and that they have completed more than 50 per cent of the work of the establishment of the base.
Since the end of the Mosul battle on 10 July, Iraqi forces have been preparing to launch an attack on Tal Afar, about 65 kilometres west of Mosul, but it is not clear when the campaign will begin.