The fighting in the west of Mosul have left significant destruction in the city where the US-led international coalition and the Iraqi army conduct almost daily airstrikes against ISIS positions, and ISIS deploys bomb and mortar attacks against the advancing forces . Photo: Rudaw
MOSUL, Iraq – US-trained Iraqi Counter Terrorism Service (ICTS) recaptured two new districts of Mosul Sunday morning as the elite force and other Iraqi forces are getting increasingly closer to the edges of the Old City where the densely populated area with narrow streets makes it a particularly difficult fight.
The two districts of Mosul al-Jadida (New Mosul) and al-Aqhwat came under the Iraqi control, Lt. Gen. Abdul Amir Rashid Yarallah, the commander of the Mosul offensive, said in a military statement.
The ICTS is now cleaning the two liberated areas, and continues to advance, Yarallah added.
The ICTS, which spearheaded the Mosul offensive in the eastern half of the city has so far had a limited role in the fresh offensive in the other side of the Tigris River that runs through the city.
The Federal Police and the elite Rapid Response instead gained a more prominent role, and were able last week to make their way into the symbolic state buildings in a night surprise attack in the downtown area. They however, came under strong counter attacks by the extremist group making them pull back from some of the gained ground.
Thousands of civilians meanwhile, have fled the conflict areas with about 12,000 people fleeing in just 24 hours on Saturday to south and east of Mosul, an unprecedented influx of people since the start of the Mosul offensive some four months ago.