Daesh commander of Mosul's Old City killed

Mar 19, 2017, 00:31
Daesh commander of Mosul's Old City killed

Some media outlets have estimated that up to 5,000 ISIS jihadists still remain in the western part of the city. By Sunday, Iraqi forces were tightening the noose.

Soldiers from the 9th Armoured Division scored a key victory on Saturday night when they cut the last road out of west Mosul, said Brett McGurk, the United States envoy to the worldwide anti-IS coalition.

Any of the fighters left in Mosul, they're going to die there. "We are very committed to not just defeating them in Mosul, but making sure these guys can not escape".

But retaking the sites are symbolic victories for Iraqi forces and also bring them closer to fully recapturing west Mosul, though tough fighting remains ahead.

While the two areas had been "entirely liberated" by Iraqi forces, Abu Raghif said, they still had to be cleared of a system of tunnels and bunkers used by Daesh fighters. Gen Mahdi Abbas Abdullah of the Rapid Response unit told Reuters.

MOSUL, Iraq Government forces set their sights on reaching the Grand Mosque in Mosul's Old City on Wednesday and the prime minister said the battle to drive Islamic State from its last urban stronghold in Iraq was reaching its final stages.

Malaysia and Australia will share intelligence on militants in Southeast Asia, a senior Malaysian minister said on Tuesday, as the two allies brace for the possible return of Islamic State (IS) militants from Iraq.

In addition to the mounting civilian death toll, more than 200,000 refugees have fled Mosul since last October, according to the International Organization for Migration.

Rescuers Work at Site of Mosque Airstrike in Aleppo Countryside
Footage published by Halab Today, an online media group focused on news in Aleppo, showed piles of rubble where the mosque stood. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said at least 46 people were killed, mainly civilians.

"They are in full collapse now", added Iraqi Brig.

In Syria, the coalition is backing an Arab-Kurdish alliance known as the Syrian Democratic Forces that is pushing towards the jihadists' de facto capital Raqa.

IS clashed on Monday with the SDF on the north bank of the Euphrates River in Raqa province, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which did not provide a toll.

In the meeting attended by Salim Jabouri, the head of parliament, Vice President Osama Nujaifi and other Sunni politicians, leaders agreed an historic opportunity existed to heal the rifts among Iraq's warring sects and restore shattered confidence by mainstream Sunni toward the state, Khanjar said.

Eight civilians were among 19 people killed in suspected US-led air strikes four kilometres (2.5 miles) south of Raqa, said the monitor.

Troops have also regained control of the city's airport, important government facilities, and a military base. An Islamic State suicide auto bomb exploded near the museum.

Malaysian Defense Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said the success of the Mosul operation would drive hundreds of IS militants and sympathizers from Southeast Asia back to their home countries.