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Iraqi-Kurdish Forces Begin Battle for Mosul

Veteran News
Veteran News
October 17, 2016
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Iraq and Kurdish troops have begun the battle of Mosul to liberate the city from ISIS. Kurdish Peshmerga are currently advancing from the east to clear villages and make way for the larger Iraqi Army. The combined forces are making gains inside and outside of the city.The coalition began assaulting toward the city early on Monday morning. The city has been held by the Islamic State since June of 2014. battle could easily take months, although some top ISIS leadership has fled the city in recent weeks.Reports indicate that Kurdish troops are within 300m of ISIS positions, and the Kurds have seized several smaller villages in the first few hours of combat. source within the Iraqi military told the BBC that its units had inflicted heavy losses on ISIS forces while advancing in Hamdaniya district, which is east of Mosul.Around 30,000 Iraqi troops have been assembled for the operation, in addition to 4,000 Kurdish Peshmerga, who are concentrating on clearing the villages east of Mosul.[caption id="attachment_8504" align="aligncenter" width="780"]


Source: Ahmad al-Rubaye/AFP[/caption]US Special Operatons Forces are on the ground advising the Iraqi troops, who will include the elite “Golden Division” of counterterrorism forces.There are estimated to be 4,000-8,000 Islamic State fighters inside the city.[caption id="attachment_8502" align="aligncenter" width="780"]


Source: Ahmad al-Rubaye/AFP[/caption]Mosul is the city from which ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi declared the “caliphate” for the Islamic State. It is a symbol of how powerful the group became, as the city is the second-largest in Iraq and the largest that ISIS holds.[caption id="attachment_8503" align="aligncenter" width="780"]

Source: Ahmad al-Rubaye/AFP

Source: Ahmad al-Rubaye/AFP[/caption]Some are worried about Shia militiamen involved in the offensive creating problems inside the mostly Sunni city, but Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi has said that only Iraqi security forces would be allowed inside Mosul. of thousands of civilians may flee the city to avoid the violence. Some fear that residents could be used as human shields by ISIS, and as many as a million people could be forced to leave their homes.After Mosul, the Iraqi security forces still have plenty of work to do: ISIS still controls large swaths of territory inside Iraq. But liberating the city will be a major blow to the terror group that so quickly defeated the Iraqi Army two years ago.

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