Timeline: Battle to retake Iraq’s Fallujah
The city 40 miles (65 kilometers) west of Baghdad has been under militant control longer than any other part of Iraq
As Iraqi forces start pushing into the city of Fallujah, a wave of bombings claimed by the ISIS group continue to target Baghdad and other Iraqi cities.
The advance is part of an offensive to rout militants from Fallujah and recapture the city west of Baghdad, which has been held by ISIS for over two years.
The city 40 miles (65 kilometers) west of Baghdad has been under militant control longer than any other part of Iraq, and ISIS fighters have had more than two years to dig in. Networks of tunnels like those found in other ISIS-held territory have already been discovered in its northeastern outskirts.
Why is Fallujah so important? A timeline of the city since the 2003 US invasion of Iraq and the fall of former president Saddam Hussain helps explain current situations.