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Islamic State desert bases still headache for Iraq

As Iraqi forces continue cleansing the western desert to keep the Syrian-Iraqi border region calm, Islamic State counterattacks in Syria are posing a new risk across the border.
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AL-QAIM, Iraq – With police being targeted in their homes near Ramadi, and with the Islamic State (IS) still in possession of bases in the vast Iraqi desert, counterattacks on forces across the border in Syria are of growing concern to the Iraqis.

Security sources deployed to the area told Al-Monitor that with the recent military campaign launched by Turkey in northern Syria against the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG), there is a risk that the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), dominated by the YPG, might withdraw from their positions in nearby eastern Syria to assist their fellow Kurds to the north. Such a development could make it easier for remaining IS forces in Syria to slip across the border and cause trouble.

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