MOSUL, Iraq, - Iraqi security forces, on Monday, continued their clashes against the Daesh militants and seized more ground in and near the city of Mosul, after nearly six weeks, since a major offensive was launched to drive out the extremist militants from their last major stronghold in the country, the Iraqi military said.
In eastern Mosul, the commandos of the Counter-Terrorism Service (CTS), fought heavy clashes with the militants and managed to completely clear the districts of al-Qahira, Masarif and Amin, a statement by the Iraqi Joint Operations Command (JOC), said.
The number of districts that have been completely freed by the CTS commandos reached, so far, 23, the statement said.
The troops inside Mosul have met stubborn resistance from the extremist militants, who are fighting in small groups and moving quickly throughout the districts, in the eastern side of the city, locally named the left bank of the Tigris River, that bisects the city.
The extremist groups frequently infiltrated behind the advanced CTS forces, using tunnels or sneaking through dozens of houses and buildings.
In south-east Mosul, the Iraqi army freed the villages of al-Gaser and al-Egiedat, some 15 km south-east of Mosul, after defeating the terrorist militants, who fled their positions, the statement added.
Also in the day, the predominantly Shiite Hashd Shaabi units, freed the villages of al-Salam, Tal Mfeilka and al-Turkomaniya, near the Daesh-held town of Tal Afar, some 70 km west of Mosul,
The presence of the Hashd Shaabi units near Tal Afar, enabled them to cut off the Daesh supply routes from the west side of Mosul, and allowed both the paramilitary units and other Iraqi and Kurdish security forces, to entirely isolate and surround Mosul.
On Tuesday morning, the paramilitary units began their advance to encircle the town of Tal Afar, preparing for the next stage to free it from the militants.
The units' presence in the whole area in west of Mosul, would also enable them to secure the border areas between Iraq and neighbouring Syria, and would cut off the Daesh supply routes between Mosul and the Syrian city of Raqqa, the capital of Daesh self-declared caliphate.
On Friday, a report by the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), said that, after more than a month of military operations against the militants in Mosul, some 72,990 civilians have fled their homes in the city and its adjacent districts, and the number went up every day.
Source: Nam News Network