Mosul (IraqiNews.com) The Iraqi army’s elite Counter-Terrorism Service (CTS) controlled on Sunday one of the biggest markets in Mosul, while Federal Police reached the boundaries of two districts in the western flank of the city, a security source has said.
“CTS continued its advance in al-Tanak district, western Mosul and controlled al-Maash market, the biggest vegetables market in Nineveh province,” the source told Shafaq News.
Meanwhile, “Federal Police controlled the Bab Ghaz yard in Sinjar, in west of Mosul, reaching to the boundaries of Zanjili and al-Borsa districts.”
Lieutenant Colonel Rami al-Anbari, of Federal Police, said “the troops gained control on strategic buildings in regions of Bab al-Sarai, Ghazi street, Mahalat al-Badan, Mahalat al-Sheikh Mohamed in the Old City. Snipers were deployed on tops of the buildings.”
“More than 30 Iraqi snipers were deployed across the borders of the Old City, in west of Mosul,” Anbari told Anadolu Agency, adding that it’s the first time that Federal Police deploys snipers during battles against the Islamic State militants since operations were first launched.
Snipers, according to Anbari, “will have an important role in destroying capabilities of the militants in this densely-populated region, while protecting them [the troops] losses that could result.”
Joint Operations Command, said in a statement earlier on Sunday that Federal Police and Rapid Response forces had put the Old City under full siege, cutting IS’s supply routes to that area, which used to extend from neighboring Zanjili and 17 Tamuz districts.
Operations around the Old City have occasionally slowed down since Iraqi forces, backed by a U.S.-led coalition, launched an offensive mid February to retake western Mosul from IS militants.