Iraqi forces advance into IS stronghold in Mosul

Mosul, Jan 11 (IANS) Iraqi security forces on Tuesday advanced further inside the eastern side of the Islamic State (IS) stronghold in the city of Mosul in northern Iraq, as fierce clashes continued against the terrorists, the Iraqi military said.

In the eastern front, the elite forces of Iraq’s Counter-Terrorism Service (CTS) completely freed the neighbourhood of Sukkar and made significant progress in the adjacent neighbourhood of Siddeeq, amid fierce clashes with IS terrorists, Xinhua quoted a statement by the Iraqi Joint Operations Command as saying.

The battles in the two neighbourhoods left some 20 terrorists killed and a booby-trapped car destroyed, the statement said.

Meanwhile, the CTS commandos freed al-Dhubbat neighbourhood and took part of the adjacent neighbourhood of al-Maliyah, leaving dozens of IS terrorists killed and two of their car bombs destroyed, the source said.

Several governmental offices were recaptured during Tuesday’s advance, including communication complex, provincial electricity department and a security headquarters, the source added.

The latest CTS advance pushed the IS terrorists to blow up sections of two bridges to prevent the government forces from launching operations to retake the western side of Mosul across the Tigris, according to the statement.

Mosul’s five bridges across the Tigris had already been partially damaged by the US-led coalition airstrikes to slow the movement of the IS terrorists between the two sides of the city.