Mosul (IraqiNews.com) A security source has unveiled that Islamic State militants are still holding pockets in southern Mosul, three months after the Iraqi government declared the recapture of the city.
Anadolu Agency quoted Abdul-Salam al-Jubouri, an Iraqi army lieutenant colonel, saying Thursday that an indefinite number of Islamic State members are still hiding at the woods stretching along the western bank of the Tigris River. He added that those militants receive food supplies from nearby villages.
He said some of the militants who were believed dead in southern Mosul have resurfaced again, sending text messages to Tribal Mobilization leaders, vowing to take revenge.
Tribal Mobilization is a Sunni-led paramilitary force that had fought IS alongside the Iraqi government troops.
Jubouri told the agency that recent air strikes targeting those newly discovered havens were not sufficient, adding that ground operations were needed to clear them and prevent them from becoming future launching points for attacks against civilians and security forces.
Iraq declared the recapture of Mosul, the birthplace of Islamic State’s self-styled “caliphate”, early July after nine months of U.S-backed operations.
Later operations have, so far, recaptured the town of Tal Afar, Kirkuk’s Hawija and Anbar’s Annah. Only Anbar’s western towns of Rawa and Qaim currently remain under actual IS influence.