Al-Hashd al-Shaabi kills three IS militants western Mosul

Forces from al-Hashd al-Shaabi militia.

Mosul ( Al-Hashd al-Shaabi troops have killed three Islamic State fighters as they attempted sneaking to the military supply roads, south Tal Afar town, a strategic IS stronghold in northwestern Mosul.

“The 33rd brigade killed three IS militants who tried to infiltrate the military supply roads, south of Tal Afar. They were targeted by a missile that killed them immediately,” the media service of the troops reported on Wednesday.

On Tuesday, the troops declared destroying a mortar detachment of IS in Mosul desert.

Mosul is the Islamic State’s last stronghold in Iraq. Eastern Mosul was recaptured from IS in January, after a US-backed offensive was launched in October. A new offensive started in February to retake the west. The greatest focus is currently set on central Mosul’s Old City, which Iraqi commanders consider as the biggest prize in the security campaign.

Al-Hashd al-Shaabi, also known as Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), which consists of 66 militia groups, is considered one of the largest militias in Iraq. It was established in 2014 by a fatwa (religious edict) by the country’s top Shiite clergy to fight the Islamic State.

In late 2016, the Iraqi parliament recognized the militia as a national armed force.

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