UPDATE 5:18 pm IST: 

The Iraqi military announced on Monday that Ramadi had been 'fully liberated' from Isis elements and said that the Iraqi flag was hoisted on the central government complex in the city. 

"The city of Ramadi has been liberated. The Iraqi counter terrorism forces have raised the Iraqi flag over the government complex in Anbar", joint operations spokesman Brigadier General Yahya Rasool said on state television, according to Reuters.


The Iraqi military on Sunday announced victory over the Islamic State group in Ramadi, which was under the control of the Islamist extremist group since May 2015.

Sabah al-Numan, the spokesperson for Iraq's counter-terrorism service, said on Sunday that all Isis militants had fled the city, adding that all mines and booby traps in the area surrounding the government compound had been cleared.

"All Daesh (IS) fighters have left. There is no resistance," Numan told AFP

"Our forces have surrounded the government complex. They are checking all entrances and surrounding buildings before moving in... The operation is almost wrapped up. Our forces will enter in the coming hours," Numan said.

The Iraqi forces launched its campaign on Tuesday to uproot the Sunni group that took control of Ramadi after defeating the government troops in May, forcing them to flee the city.

It reached the al-Huz neighbourhood, which has a provincial government compound and a police station, on Friday. The booby traps, mines, suicide car bombs and Isis' snipers had slowed the pace of Iraqi forces, but the US-led coalition's air strikes assisted them to reach their target.

The Iraqi security forces finally captured the entire city on Sunday. As of Saturday, five personnel of Iraqi forces were reported to have been killed.

Iraq sees the defeat of Isis in Ramadi as a major victory. The Iraqi forces had in October regained power in Baiji, Iraq's major oil refinery that was seized by Isis in June 2014. In November, it was again successful in taking back Sinjar after fighting with the jihadist group for over 15 months.

"These are big blows to Daesh... It's very clear that Daesh is going down, having lost battles in Beiji, Sinjar and now Ramadi," said commander of the Anbar Emergency Police Unit Brigadier General Ahmed al-Bilawi, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Daesh is an acronym for the Arabic phrase al-Dawla al-Islamiya al-Iraq al-Sham.