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Federal Police: plan in the works for the invasion of Mosul’s Old City

 Federal Police: plan in the works for the invasion of Mosul’s Old City

Military vehicles of federal police are seen during a battle with Islamic State militants in Mosul, Iraq, March 6, 2017. REUTERS/Thaier Al-Sudani – RTS11N8V

 

Military vehicles of federal police are seen during a battle with Islamic State militants in Mosul, Iraq, March 6, 2017. REUTERS/Thaier Al-Sudani – RTS11N8V

Mosul (IraqiNews.com) Iraqi Federal Police forces are working on a combat plan for the invasion of the Islamic State-held Old City as operations reach the final stage to retake the city.

Deputy Federal Police commander, Maj. Gen. Jaafar al-Battat, was quoted Sunday saying in statements the density of the civilian population in the area had obliged the delay of the invasion until districts overlooking it from the northwest are retaken.

Only four districts are left under Islamic State militants’ control in western Mosul : the Old City: Zanjili, al-Shifaa and al-Sihha, according to Battat, who added that the Old City has recently seen an increase in militants numbers as many sought refuge there after Iraqi forces had retaken areas to the northwest, most notably the 17 Tamuz and Iktisadiyeen districts.

The Grand Nuri al-Kabir mosque in western Mosul (Google Maps)

Iraqi troops recaptured eastern Mosul in January after three months of fighting, and the Iraqi security command said earlier this week it controls 89.5 percent of the western side of the city, three months after a second phase of the campaign launched to recapture that region.

The densely populated and structured Old City is the place where IS supreme leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi proclaimed the establishment of the group’s rule in Iraq and Syria.

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