Iraqi army advances further in western Mosul, 2 civilians wounded by IS mortars

A military vehicle of Iraqi Counter-Terrorism Service (CTS) forces is seen at the site of car bomb attack during a battle with Islamic State militants in Andalus neighborhood of Mosul, Iraq, January 17, 2017. REUTERS/Alaa Al-Marjani

Nineveh ( lraqi forces advanced towards more districts in western Mosul on Wednesday as operations against Islamic State militants proceed to retake the region.

The army’s Counter-Terrorism Forces command said its troops moved towards the Shuqaq al-Yarmouk (apartment buildings) and Yabessat districts in western Mosul, having recaptured nearby districts of Shuqaq Nablus and al-Resala on Tuesday.

Yarmouk district, western Mosul (google maps).

Meanwhile, Ikhnews quoted a security source in Nineveh saying two civilians were wounded by mortars fired from IS militants at Ghizlani, south of Mosul’s western side. The source said the pair was going to Nabi Shiit district, which was recaptured weeks ago by security forces, to pull out the bodies of relatives buried under debris.

Iraqi government forces recaptured eastern Mosul in January and launched an offensive in February to recapture the western region.Iraqi troops are currently working to retake central Mosul districts from IS militants, specifically eyeing the city’s grand mosque where the group’s self-styled “Caliphate” was declared in 2014.

Iraqi and U.S.-led coalition generals have admitted that battles in western Mosul were much more difficult due to the region’s high population and the complex structure of its residential areas.

Iraqi government data reveal that at least 355.000 civilians have been displaced since operations began in October.

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