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Report: Iraq Military Warns Residents of IS-controlled Ramadi to Leave City

FILE - Iraqi security forces take combat positions on the front line with Islamic State group militants in Ramadi, capital of Iraq's Anbar province, 115 kilometers (70 miles) west of Baghdad, Dec. 10, 2015.

Iraqi military planes dropped leaflets on Sunday on Ramadi, asking residents to leave within 72 hours the western city that is under the control of Islamic State militants, state TV reported, citing a military statement.

It gave no further details but an army officer, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Reuters: "It is an indication that a major military operation to retake the city center will start soon."

Last week, Iraqi security forces said they had made advances on two fronts in Ramadi, clearing Islamic State militants from a key military command base and the sprawling neighborhood of al-Taamim on the western edge of the city.

Iraqi intelligence estimates the number of Islamic State fighters that are entrenched in the center of Ramadi at 250 to 300.