Iraqi forces advance towards Daesh-held Mosul

Published June 29th, 2016 - 08:00 GMT
Iraqi soldiers stationed on the outskirts of Mosul. (AFP/File)
Iraqi soldiers stationed on the outskirts of Mosul. (AFP/File)

On Tuesday, elite counter-extremism forces and Popular Mobilization fighters retook control over Telol al-Baj area, which lies on the highway linking the town of al-Shirqat, situated about 250 kilometers (155 miles) north of the capital, Baghdad, to the southern part of Mosul, al-Forat news agency reported.

"Security personnel have liberated Telol al-Baj, and several units have been deployed four kilometers (2.4 miles) away from the area to prevent the infiltration of vehicles rigged with explosives into the region," said Lieutenant General Abdul Ghani al-Assadi, the commander of Iraq's counterextremism forces.

He said the Iraqi forces had inflicted heavy losses on the ranks of Daesh in Telol al-Baj.

Iraqi pro-government forces also engaged Daesh ]in other parts of the northern Nineveh Province, killing scores of its fighters.

Elsewhere, in the western province of al-Anbar, Iraqi security forces retook Halabisa and Albu Alwan areas on the outskirts of Fallujah, located roughly 69 kilometers (43 miles) west of Baghdad, and raised the national Iraqi flag in both regions.

On June 18, Iraqi forces launched an offensive against Daesh militants to retake the southern part of Mosul and the town of Qayyarah, one day after they retook Fallujah. The forces aim to ultimately recapture the entire Mosul, which Daesh has proclaimed its headquarters in Iraq.

The northern and western parts of Iraq have been plagued by gruesome violence ever since Daesh militants mounted an offensive in the country in June 2014.

Iraqi government forces, backed by fighters from allied Popular Mobilization units, have been pushing the militants out of the country's territory.

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