U.S. created ISIS, ‘Mosul’ goes to Iraqi forces: VP Maliki

Baghdad [Iraq]: Iraq’s Vice President Nouri al-Maliki said that recapture of Mosul is an achievement of the Iraqi army and not of the United States as America has contributed to the emergence of ISIS in the country.

Maliki said that U.S is trying to highjack the victory and claims it was them who “led that war”.

“Yes, they supported us with aviation, but the main credit goes to the Iraqi soldiers, people’s militia, Iraqi air force,” al-Maliki stated in his interview with the Russian news agency.

He added that he “regrets and denies Americans claiming the victory in Mosul is their achievement.”

“In reality, this is the victory of the Iraqi army as it came with a high cost, with some 20,000 Iraqi soldiers and police officers have been either killed or wounded.

Acknowledging that U.S. has been providing support to the Iraqi army and allied forces through air strikes in the fight against ISIS, Maliki said “but it is America who created ISIS in the first place and now Washington seeks to establish military bases on Iraqi territory in order to maintain influence in the region.”

As the battle of Mosul lasted for nine months, Maliki said, “The Iraqi military did everything possible “not to destroy the city more than it was necessary in the circumstances of war to not to make residents suffer.”

Maliki specifically pointed out the present challenges before the Iraqi forces as “the victory is yet not final”.

He said that there are “still small terrorist hubs in the city,” as well as terrorist “sleeper cells” or “lone wolves” across the country which emerge from time to time and carry out bombings.

Others are still hiding or have fled with the refugees, according to the Iraqi vice-president.(ANI)