Town near Mo­sul fights against mil­i­tants be­fore troops ar­rive

Daily Freeman (Kingston, NY) - - NATION+WORLD -

Iraqi troops march­ing to­ward Mo­sul moved into the north­ern Iraqi town of al-Hud on Wed­nes­day, find­ing mu­ti­lated bod­ies of Is­lamic State group fight­ers still strewn on the ground. Res­i­dents had al­ready risen up and killed many of the mil­i­tants them­selves.

With the of­fen­sive to re­cap­ture Mo­sul in its third day, Iraqi forces ad­vanc­ing from the south and east are fight­ing to re­take the towns and vil­lages that dot the plains and line the Ti­gris River lead­ing to the city. At times, they’ve met fierce re­sis­tance.

The fight for Mo­sul, launched this week by Iraqi se­cu­rity forces sup­ported by U.S. air power and ad­vis­ers, could take months and is likely to fea­ture pe­ri­ods of fierce com­bat, ac­cord­ing to Army Gen. Joseph Vo­tel, com­man­der of U.S. Cen­tral Com­mand.

Vo­tel noted that the ex­trem­ist group has had more than two years to pre­pare its de­fenses.

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