Published: Mon, March 20, 2017
Global Media | By Garry Long

More civilians flee as fighting resumes in western Mosul

More civilians flee as fighting resumes in western Mosul

"The battle is not easy. we are fighting an irregular enemy who hides among the citizens and uses tactics of booby-trapping, explosions and suicide bombers, and the operation is taking place with precision to preserve the lives of the citizens", said JOC spokesman Brigadier General Yahya Rasool.

US and Iraqi officials are citing gains in the battle to retake western Mosul from Islamic State, saying pro-government troops have pushed farther into militant-held territory and cut off potential escape routes.

Trains from Mosul once carried passengers as well, but have not done so since the overthrow of Saddam Hussein's regime by US-led forces in 2003, he said.

Hundreds of thousands of civilians are still reported to be caught with the militants inside the city. Tens of thousands have been pouring into camps outside Mosul.

Iraqi troops have effectively sealed off Mosul from the rest of the territory IS controls in Iraq and Syria.

Iraqi forces launched the massive operation to retake Mosul in October, first retaking its eastern side and then setting their sights on the smaller but more densely-populated west.

The total number of Iraqis to have been displaced from western Mosul now stands at 111,000, according to Iraqi Minister of Displacement and Migration Jassim al-Jaff, who added that the ongoing displacement rate had reached between 7,000 and 8,000 people per day.

NCAA tournament: Gonzaga back in Sweet 16
They trimmed the deficit further to 63-58 with 5:31 remaining on Law's putback dunk following a missed 3 from McIntosh . The NCAA released a statement following the game that confirmed the officiating crew erred in not calling goaltending.

There has been a steady stream of people trudging out of western districts.

IS overran large areas north and west of Baghdad in 2014, but Iraqi forces backed by US-led air strikes have since retaken most of the territory they lost.

"Raqqa remains their [ISIS's] administrative capital, it's where we think a lot of their leaders are located, it's where we think they are planning a lot of attacks around the world", said McGurk. "It's where their stores are, and the people living there, both men and women, are with them (supporters or members)", he said.

More than 65,000 of them fled their homes over the past two weeks, the organisation said.

SDF forces took control of five villages as they continued a slow advance, the Observatory said.

In Baghdad, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said: "Daesh become day after day surrounded inside a tight area and they are in their final days". The Iraqi forces include army, special forces, Kurdish peshmerga and Shi'ite militias. The Ministry of Immigration and Displacement said on Tuesday that in recent days, nearly 13,000 displaced people from western Mosul had been given assistance and temporary accommodation each day, adding to the 200,000 already displaced. "We are facing stiff resistance from Daesh fighters with snipers and mortars", an Iraqi official said.

Losing Mosul would be a major strike against Islamic State.

Like this: