In what looks to be a major breakthrough in the battle against ISIS, Iraqi forces have taken the outskirts of the strategic city of Tikrit and are well-positioned to take the rest — according to United States and Iraqi officials Tuesday.

The advancement can largely be attributed largely to the presence of U.S. warplanes, which joined the fight last week after Iraqi forces failed to make any progress despite a significant edge in ground troops.

According to the Associated Press, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said security forces have cleared neighborhoods on the southern and western edges of the city.

“Intense street fighting” and other skirmishes continued on Tuesday, with the ISIS militants stuck in the center of the city and surrounded.

USA Today