Islamic State mufti killed in Mosul air strike

More recently, he has given the authority for IS to continue to attack civilians in the eastern side of Mosul, which Iraqi forces have recaptured.

OCHA statement came as fierce battles are underway to drive out the extremist IS militants from the western side of Mosul, including the densely-populated old city center with its old houses at the maze-like narrow allies.

Analysts believe that many senior members of the Islamic State fled in the days and weeks before Iraqi forces, backed by Kurdish and Shi'ite militias, began the major operation to retake the city in October.

But Allawi warned that retaking Mosul will not be the end of the fight against IS in the country.

"The federal police penetrated the old city and killed 13 terrorists, and destroyed 7 booby-trapped vehicles of Daesh in the Bab al-Jadid axis towards the al-Nuri Mosque in western Mosul", police commander Maj.




Yahia Rasoul, said in a statement that Federal Police and Rapid Response forces had put the Old City under full siege, cutting ISIS's supply routes to that area, which used to extend from neighboring Zanjili and 17 Tamuz districts, Iraqi News reported. The authorities are now setting their sights on the Tigris River which divides the city.

IS seized Mosul in mid-2014 when the jihadist group swept across areas north and west of Baghdad, taking control of swathes of territory and declaring a cross-border "caliphate" in Iraq and neighboring Syria.

"Mosul has pushed us to our operational limits", Grande said.

The jihadists have "reconstituted attack capabilities in Diyala and central Salaheddin", he said, referring to provinces where Iraqi forces had largely reasserted control after heavy fighting earlier in the war against IS.

Displaced Iraqis from Mosul walk to cross the Tigris by boat as flooding after days of rainfall has closed the city's bridges, at the village of Thibaniya, south of Mosul, Iraq April 16, 2017.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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