Army says 4 districts left to recapture western Mosul from Islamic State

Members of Iraqi rapid response forces are pictured during clashes with Islamic State militants in Mosul, Iraq March 13, 2017. REUTERS/Azad Lashkari

Mosul ( The Iraqi army said Thursday that only four districts of western Mosul were left to recapture from the Islamic State as government forces continue to clear the group’s last remaining entrenchments in the region.

Sabah al-Nuaman, a spokesperson of the army’s elite Counter-Terrorism Service, said the forces had managed to take over “Daesh’s (Islamic State) core” by retaking al-Tenek district, where 500 militants were killed in security assaults.

He added that only four neighborhoods are between security forces and overall recapture of the western region of Mosul.

Mosul (google maps)

Iraqi government forces, backed by a U.S.-led international military coalition and paramilitary troops, recaptured eastern Mosul in January and launched another offensive in February to retake the west.

The coalition estimates the remaining IS fighters in Mosul by less than 1000, and Iraqi officials say the group currently controls less than seven percent of Iraqi territory.

The most remarkable military activity is currently focused around the ancient Old City region, the area from where IS supreme leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi declared the establishment of the group in a famous sermon.

Government troops, backed by Popular Mobilization Units, also launched an offensive on Tuesday to retake al-Hadar region, west of the city, and recaptured several villages and an ancient area there since then.

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