Iraqi forces ad­vance in Mo­sul un­der fire, one sol­dier killed

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - NEWS -

MO­SUL, IRAQ >> Iraqi troops ad­vanced cau­tiously into east­ern dis­tricts of Mo­sul on Fri­day, fac­ing stiff re­sis­tance from Is­lamic State mil­i­tants a day af­ter they paused their as­sault due to poor vis­i­bil­ity, of­fi­cers said.

Airstrikes, au­to­matic fire and ar­tillery were heard from dawn, and one sol­dier was re­ported killed in clashes. Civil­ians, some of them wounded, could be seen flee­ing the fighting.

Ac­cord­ing to the of­fi­cers, the Iraqi forces aim to take com­plete con­trol of the city’s Tahrir area and from there move into the ad­ja­cent Muharabeen district. The of­fi­cers spoke on con­di­tion of anonymity be­cause they were not au­tho­rized to talk to the me­dia.

Iraqi forces launched the lon­gawaited op­er­a­tion to re­take Mo­sul a month ago but have only ad­vanced into a few east­ern dis­tricts. The troops have faced fierce re­sis­tance, with snipers, mor­tar fire and Is­lamic State sui­cide bombers driv­ing ar­mor-plated ve­hi­cles packed with ex­plo­sives.

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