IS Mufti Killed in Western Mosul

Smoke rises over the city during clashes between Iraqi forces and Islamic State militants, in Mosul, Iraq March 25, 2017. REUTERS/Khalid al Mousily

Mosul (BasNews/ Warplanes belonging to the US-led coalition have killed Islamic State (IS) Sharia jurist (Mufti) in western Mosul, north of Iraq.

Abdullah Bardani, known as Abu Ayoub Attar, was IS’s authorized figure for giving religious rulings in the city, said commander of Nineveh operations, Najim al-Jabouri.

Meanwhile, Iraq’s War Media Cell confirmed on Thursday coalition jets heavily pounded IS headquarters in western Mosul whereas dozens of jihadists were killed or injured.

After launching a massive operation in February this year to liberate western neighborhoods of Mosul, Iraqi army announced last week that IS jihadists are now in control of less than 7% of the western half of the major city.

The Iraqi Joint Operations Command said Thursday its forces were controlling 60 percent of territory in the western flank of Mosul. The government announced late January it totally recaptured the eastern side of the city. Recapturing Mosul will effectively end Islamic State’s self-proclaimed “Caliphate”.

Operations are currently focused on retaking central Mosul’s Old City, a densely populated area where progress has occasionally slowed down to ensure civilians’ safety. The conflict in Mosul has displaced more than 460.000 people, and hundreds of civilians were killed both IS assaults and and alleged mistaken strikes by Iraqi and coalition forces.

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