Iraqi forces clash with IS in eastern Mosul (05/01/17)

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Reuters

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Iraqi forces have progressively gained floor because the offensive started in October

Iraqi forces have made recent progress within the battle in opposition to so-called Islamic State (IS) in Mosul, reportedly taking a key district within the metropolis’s east.

Elite troops captured al-Muthana following night-time combating, a military spokesman mentioned, placing them ready to take larger floor close by.

It comes days after Iraqi forces started the second part of a push to overcome the final main IS stronghold in Iraq.

About two-thirds of east Mosul has been retaken since October, officers say.

The military mentioned its troops had raised the nationwide flag after capturing al-Muthana.

Counter-Terrorism Service (CTS) spokesman Sabah al-Numan advised Reuters information company troopers had attacked by evening for the primary time, crossing a tributary of the River Tigris.

“We used particular gear and had the factor of shock – the enemy didn’t anticipate us to mount an evening offensive as a result of all earlier offensives had been in the course of the day,” he mentioned.

On Wednesday the commander of the US-led coalition in opposition to IS mentioned Iraqi forces had been gaining momentum in Mosul, in northern Iraq, after the marketing campaign had nearly floor to a halt by December within the face of fierce resistance by IS.

Lieutenant Basic Steve Townsend mentioned this was partly attributable to improved co-ordination between Iraqi commanders from numerous pro-government forces concerned within the operation.

It additionally coincides with a pointy improve within the variety of army advisers from the US and different coalition nations serving to with the battle.

The offensive to recapture town of Mosul was launched on 17 October, greater than two years after jihadists overran town earlier than seizing management of a lot of northern and western Iraq.

Iraqi safety forces, Kurdish Peshmerga fighters, Sunni Arab tribesmen and Shia militiamen, assisted by US-led coalition warplanes and army advisers, have been concerned within the combat.

Greater than 100,000 folks have fled their properties in and round Mosul and UN officers are warning that this determine is prone to rise as pro-government forces press additional into town.