A military commander announced that the ISIL Takfiri terrorists are engaged in a “fight to the death” in Mosul’s Old City as advancing Iraqi forces have bottled up the group’s remaining elements in a few patches of the Old City.
Staff Lieutenant General Abdulghani al-Assadi, a senior commander in the Iraq’s elite Counter-Terrorism Service (CTS), announced the news on Tuesday, adding that army troops were just 250 meters from the Tigris River after recapturing the embattled city’s main hospital compound a day earlier.
He further stated that terrorists were increasingly resorting to bomb attacks, including through detonating their explosive vests, speculating that the battle would get even more intense as the militants were pushed closer to the river, which divides the city into the Eastern and Western parts.
The Iraqi forces continued their non-stop battle against ISIL terrorists in the Old City of Mosul, inching closer to winning back the key district.
The Iraqi forces continued to hit ISIL’s last positions in the Old City district in Mosul and managed to lay siege on the remaining pockets of terrorists in their positions in al-Qal’iat and al-Meidan areas.
Local sources, meantime, reported that the Iraqi Air Force and artillery and missile units have been heavily pounding ISIL’s movements in al-Qal’iat and al-Meidan.
Iraq’s anti-terrorism body, meantime, said that the Iraqi forces should capture 1km before they could declare the full liberation of the Old City of Mosul.
The Arabic-language tv networks reported that ISIL militants that are still in the Old City of Mosul do not exceed fifty.
Iraqi Federal Police Chief Lt. Gen. Raed Shaker Jawdat had announced that the Northeastern bank of the Tigris River has been completely freed from ISIL, saying full liberation of Mosul city will be announced soon.
Jowdat said that after the Iraqi forces drove ISIL out of the Northeastern part of the Tigris River’s bank, the terrorists fled towards the regions in the North-East that is under the control of anti-terrorism forces.
The Iraqi Police Chief further said that a public declaration will be made about victory, adding that “after the full liberation of Mosul, we will move towards other ISIL-held regions in Iraq.”
In the meantime, Commander of Qademoun Ya Nineveh Abdul Amir Rashid Yarallah informed of the liberation of Macawi region and al-Shefa neighborhood.
Field sources, meantime, reported that the Iraqi forces managed to push ISIL back from Bab al-Hadid neighborhood, Bazaar al-Arba’a and Iron Bridge in old city district of Mosul city.
The Iraqi state TV announced on Thursday that the ISIL collapsed in Mosul after the army regained control of al-Nuri mosque where the terrorist group’s ringleader proclaimed his self-styled “caliphate” three years ago.
The army won back control of the wrecked historic mosque of Mosul.
The ISIL militants had committed another historical crime by blowing up the al-Nuri mosque and its historical al-Hadba minaret. The 850 year-old Mosul’s al-Nuri mosque is highly symbolic because it was there that leader of the ISIL group, Ibrahim al-Samarrai, also known as Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, declared himself the so-called caliphate of the Takfiri terrorist group, shortly after the flashpoint city fell to terrorists in June 2014 and became their de facto capital in Iraq.
Meantime, the Iraqi defense ministry declared that “no region in Mosul city was under the ISIL terrorists’ control”.
Also, sporadic clashes were reported between the Iraqi forces and the ISIL terrorists in Mosul and the nearby areas.
The anti-terrorism unit of the Iraqi army also announced that a total number of only 200 terrorists remained in Mosul’s Old city.
The Iraqi operation to recapture Mosul, the key ISIL stronghold in Iraq, began in October 2016 and resulted in the liberation of Mosul’s Eastern part in January 2017. The Iraqi Army started a new phase of its military operation in Nineveh province late February to drive the ISIL terrorists out of their bastion in the Western part of the city of Mosul.