At least 13 civilians killed in USA led-airstrike in western Mosul

At least 13 civilians killed in USA led-airstrike in western Mosul

At least 13 civilians killed in USA led-airstrike in western Mosul

"Though the fighting is going to be very hard, this enemy is completely surrounded", said Col. John Dorrian, spokesman for the USA -led coalition.

ERBIL, Iraq Iraqi forces are making progress in their offensive to expel Islamic State from Mosul but face a "very complicated" urban battle as the militants hide in mosques, homes and hospitals, a USA general told Reuters on Wednesday. "This is something that is a despicable and cowardly tactic", he said.

He noted that there had already been some positive results for the people of Iraq as the fight against ISIS continued. "And a lot of the reason for that is the coalition airstrikes that have supported our partners as they've taken that territory back". ISIS has been encircled for "quite some time'".

The fact that the Iraqi government is making gains against IS militants illustrates how its intelligence apparatus has improved against IS, says Hisham al-Hashimi, a security analyst in Baghdad who advises the government on Sunni militant groups.

"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.

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"It is very complicated. With each passing day the number of ISIS fighters in Mosul goes down, the amount of resources they have available to continue their mayhem goes down and, ultimately, they are not going anywhere and they are going to be defeated". They have really two choices: "they can surrender to the Iraqi security forces, or they're going to be killed".

However, the western part of Mosul, with its narrow streets and heavily populated neighborhoods, appears to be a bigger challenge to the Iraqi forces.

The spokesman said "incremental" to describe the slow, careful progress is simply "an accurate discussion of what's happening".

"In reality, it's very, very slow and very, very hard, and it's gut-busting, difficult fighting between our forces and theirs", he told reporters. It's very slow, it's very tough. We never, ever target civilians. "Prime Minister [Haider] Abadi's been very clear on that, and it's been an enduring principle of the campaign throughout".

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