Daesh driven out of three more Mosul neighbourhoods

Iraq's military command said that its forces in the past 24 hours have captured three more neighbourhoods from Daesh in the east and southeast of the city.

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Displaced Iraqis, who fled the Daesh stronghold of Mosul, stand in line as they leave Khazer camp to go home, Iraq, January 4, 2017.

Iraqi army and security forces are gaining momentum in the 11-week campaign to retake Mosul from Daesh, the commander of the US-led coalition said on Wednesday.

US Army Lieutenant-General Steve Townsend said since resuming the offensive last week, the counter-terrorism service, rapid response division and federal police have retaken several eastern districts despite fierce resistance.

Townsend send Daesh is using the tactics to which they are likely to resort if they lose the city, killing dozens with bombs in Baghdad and attacking security forces elsewhere.

Though vastly outnumbered in Mosul, Daesh has used the urban terrain and the cover of a civilian population to manoeuvre, launch attacks and avoid detection.

Townsend said Iraqi forces were doing a better job of defending against suicide car bombs. That had helped stem casualties.

Meanwhile, thousands of civilians have managed to flee the city as the operation to retake the terrorist stronghold continues.