A renewed push by Iraqi government forces to recapture the northern city of Tikrit from Sunni-led militants has ended in retreat after the assault met heavy resistance.
Government forces, working together with Shi’ite militia fighters, had claimed advances into southern parts of Tikrit early on July 15.
But those government troops reportedly withdrew overnight.
Residents said there was no fighting in Tikrit after dawn on July 16.
It is the second government assault on Tikrit that has been repelled by militants in recent weeks.
Tikrit is a stronghold of loyalists of the late dictator Saddam Hussein and Sunni former army officers who joined forces last month with militants from the Islamic State, previously known as ISIL.
The setback for Iraq’s army came after the parliament in Baghdad on July 15 elected a new speaker in a step toward creating a new government.
Based on reporting by Reuters and AFP