Published: Wed, June 28, 2017
Global Media | By Meredith Barber

Iraqi military pushes deeper into Mosul's Old City

Iraqi military pushes deeper into Mosul's Old City

Iraqi forces on Tuesday pushed towards the river side of Mosul's Old City, their key target in the eight-month campaign to capture Islamic State's de-facto capital, and Iraq's prime minister predicted victory very soon.

Earlier in June, reports claimed Isis blew up an iconic mosque in Mosul where the group declared its "Caliphate" in 2014 in what some analysts believe was a move to avoid humiliation, as troops continued to advance.

A US -led global coalition is providing air and ground support in the eight-month-old offensive.

Members of the Iraqi federal police hold position during an armed exchange as smoke billows in the background while advancing through the Old City of Mosul on June 28, 2017, as the offensive continues to retake the last district held by Daesh terrorists.

The territory that the Islamic State group still holds in Mosul has been reduced to an area that now amounts to about 2 square kilometers (0.8 square miles) in the ancient Old City district.

But hundreds of civilians have been killed in the past month as they tried to flee the Old City.

The army's 16th Infantry Division liberated the neighborhoods of Hadrat al-Saada and al-Ahmadiyah in the northwestern part of Mosul's old city center, and they raised the Iraqi flag on some of its buildings, Abdul-Amir Yarallah from the Joint Operations Command (JOC) said in a statement.

Sporadic sniper fire could be heard, and an incoming rocket, as the troops used a white commercial drone to survey the insurgents' defenses.

Iraqi forces have seized more ground from ISIL in Mosul. There has been no confirmation of Russian reports over the past days that he has been killed.

The statement named many neighborhoods and commercial areas inside the old city still under the control of the extremist IS militants, including al-Farouq al-Thaniyah, Raas al-Kour, al-Maidan, Bab al-Jadid, Bab al-Toub and Sarijkhanah, along with other areas.

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