Five IS leaders, including Russians, killed in coalition airstrikes in western Mosul

A U.S. Air Force KC-10 Extender refuels a British aircraft during a sortie to support Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve over Iraq, March 22, 2017. Extenders have provided fuel to coalition aircraft to weaken and destroy the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. Air Force photo by Senior Tyler Woodward.

Mosul ( Five Islamic State leaders, including Russian nationals, died late Thursday when U.S.-led coalition fighter jets pounded their locations in western Mosul, Iraqi military intelligence services said.

The service said in a statement that coalition jets killed Islamic State’s military area commander for Mesherfa region, Abu Mariam al-Hadidi.

It added that four Russian members were killed when the strikes targeted al-Sihha district.

Sihha district, west of Mosul.

Iraqi forces recaptured the eastern side of Mosul in January after three months of fighting with Islamic State, and sat on a new offensive in February to retake the western region. Commanders said earlier this month that the Islamic State was controlling only less than seven percent of Iraqi territory, and that only six districts were still witnessing IS presence.

Islamic State has lost many of its senior commanders since operations launched to retake the western side of Mosul. Officials from the U.S.-led coalition estimate the number of remaining militants in Mosul by less than 1000. Operations are currently eyeing the Old City area, where IS first declared the establishment of its rule in 2014.

The conflict in Mosul has so far displaced more than half a million of the city’s population, according to the Iraqi government and the United Nations.

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