Joint forces to storm Mo­sul in months... Kurds are backup force

The Kurdish Globe - - FRONT PAGE -

The Pesh­merga forces have ar­rived in the out­skirts of the city of Mo­sul, in north­ern Iraq, which is un­der the Is­lamic State’s (IS) con­trol, amid prepa­ra­tions for storm­ing the city with the sup­port of the U.S.-led in­ter­na­tional coali­tion, lo­cal sources from Mo­sul re­ported on Thurs­day.

In the mean­time, the so-called Popular Mo­bi­liza­tion Forces -- armed Shi­ite fac­tions and vol­un­teers -- ar­rived in the city of Do­huk in the Kur­dis­tan Re­gion to be trained in a camp there and then join the fight against the IS mil­i­tants.

Kur­dish mil­i­tary of­fi­cials said that this ground attack will be wide­spread to tar­get the IS strongholds, par­tic­u­larly those lo­cated be­tween Syria’s al-Buka­mal and Iraq’s al-Qaem ar­eas, point­ing out that sev­eral mil­i­tary units from Jor­dan, Kuwait, UAE and Saudi Ara­bia will take part in the op­er­a­tions.

Ira­nian and Kur­dish spe­cial units will sup­port the Iraqi army in the in­va­sion of the IS-held prov­inces of An­bar and Nineva.

On the other hand, the IS group in Mo­sul is study­ing a plan for the up­com­ing battle, tak­ing into con­sid­er­a­tion the need for more mil­i­tary ca­pa­bil­i­ties and eco­nomic re­sources to stand against the attack.

“Thus the rad­i­cal group is think­ing of an effi- cient strat­egy to re­pel this ground attack on their strongholds in Mo­sul,” a mil­i­tary source said un­der con­di­tion of anonymity.

Iraqi ac­tivists pub­lished what they de­scribed as “leaks” about pro­pos­als and notes re­ceived by the IS com­man­ders in Mo­sul, in­clud­ing: “Prepa­ra­tion of mil­i­tants trained on spe­cial op­er­a­tions, and their de­ploy­ment on the bat­tle­fronts as quick as pos­si­ble.”

Ad­di­tion­ally, IS will deploy a net­work in the bat­tle­field in an at­tempt to se­cure the ji­hadists’ com­mu­ni­ca­tion. Also, the group seeks to ap­point flex­i­ble mov­ing po­si­tions of com­mand to lead the units on the fight­ing fronts as well as tak­ing strate­gic de­ci­sions on time, ac­cord­ing to the leaks.

The leaks in­cluded a va­ri­ety of backup plans that cope separately with the na­ture of each fight­ing front, as ap­point­ing lead­ers of high ranks for the de­ci­sion-mak­ing process.

The group has re­port­edly started dig­ging trenches across Mo­sul to be ready for con­fronta­tion and de­ter the at­tacks, lo­cal sources said.

Ac­cord­ing to the leaks, the group will “re­spond fiercely” to what they de­scribed the “hos­tile forces cen­tres” in an at­tempt to pre­vent them from ap­proach­ing Mo­sul.

In an ear­lier state­ment, civil rights ac­tivist Ali Ab­boud said in Mo­sul that the Pesh­merga forces pounded the city with rock­ets end of Jan­uary, when more than 18 grad rock­ets hit IS head­quar­ters in ar­eas like Qa­disiyah, Muthanna and Rasheed.

Mo­sul was con­trolled by the IS rad­i­cal group last June. The Sunni tribes – who had been alien­ated by the for­mer Iraqi Prime Min­is­ter Nuri al-Ma­liki’s pol­icy– fa­cil­i­tated the rad­i­cal group’s con­trol over the city.

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