Joe Biden US Vice-President applauds Iraqi progress against ISIS, says ISIS united Iraqis

Biden however urged Iraqi leaders not to lose the sense of political urgency that brought them to this point.

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play US Vice-President, Joe Biden (BBC)
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Joe Biden, the United States Vice-President has commended the Iraqi government's efforts against ISIS.

Said Biden:

"ISIS was on the offensive everywhere in Iraq" eight months ago, but now their advance had been "halted"

Biden however urged Iraqi leaders not to lose the sense of political urgency that brought them to this point, adding that in a stroke of irony, IS militants had infact helped unite Iraqis.

The US VP made this known ahead of a planned meeting between Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and US President Barack Obama next week.

BBC reports that Iraqi government forces recaptured Tikrit from IS last week after it fell to the militants in June.

Meanwhile, Abadi has named Anbar province, where IS and other Sunni insurgents still operate freely, as the next target.

Anbara which is a heavily-Sunni area stretching from Iraq's capital Baghdad to the Syrian border, is the country's biggest province.

However, most of its towns and cities are held by IS or other Sunni insurgents.

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