Nineveh (IraqiNews.com) Iraqi army and police forces recaptured on Wednesday three districts in the eastern side of Mosul as operations resume to retake the city from Islamic State militants.
Commander of the joint forces operations in Nineveh, Abdul-Amir Yarallah, said the forces recaptured the Nissan 7th (April 7th) neighborhood and raised the Iraqi flag above its buildings. The forces had stormed the district earlier on Wednesday along with al-Maliya and Seddiq districts.
Also on Wednesday, Federal Police service commander, Shaker Jawdat, said his forces took ovre al-Salam and al-Saheroun neighborhoods. Police said earlier they arrested six IS members in the south.
Iraqi forces have become in control over nearly 50 out of 84 districts in eastern Mosul, and commanders declared earlier this week they had reached the eastern bank of the Tigris River, which bisects the city. IS still maintains strongholds in the west.
Iraqi military media have put the number of IS militants killed since the launch of operations in October at at least 1757.
Earlier on Wednesday, a spokesperson of the oil ministry said ministry teams put out fires set by IS combatants at an oil field south of Mosul, bringing the total of oil wells extinguished by the ministry, since militants pulled out from the town of Qayyara, to 17.
As commanders said recently they were preparing to storm the strategic Mosul University campus, a vital IS hideout, senior CTS commander, Sami al-Aridi, said the move needs “special plans” due to reports that the campus might contain “chemical substances” taken by the militants from university labs for combat purposes.
“Mosul University is an outstanding target, and has to have a special plan,” Aridi said in press statements. “Security forces have taken all precautions anticipating that Daesh(Islamic State) could strike back at the forces with chemical substances.”