The Islamic state terrorists are “on the brink of total defeat” in Mosul, the Iraqi capital of the caliphate they proclaimed in 2014, as said by the United States Air Force Colonel John Dorrian.
General Yahya Rasool, a spokesman for the Iraqi military, has pointed out that the Haider al-Abadi government and its allies have managed to encircle the jihadists and reduce the territory they control to only twelve square kilometers.
Security forces have made significant progress in the north-west of the city in recent days, after announcing the opening of a new front in their operations against the organization headed by Abu Bakr al Baghdadi in this area of Mosul.
On Sunday, Iraqi uniformed men, backed by Shiite militias on the ground and the international coalition from the air, recovered the important neighborhood of 17 Tamuz (July 17), the first step to break into the city and one of the jihadists strongholds in the western zone.
Al-Abadi’s government intends to declare full victory over Mosul towards the start of the holy month of Ramadan scheduled for May 27, but for that, it will have to beat the militants in black, who still resist in the Old City.
Military sources augur the battle for the Old City will be one of the most difficult, because it has a large civilian population that terrorists are using as human shields. In addition, Islamic State has plagued the place with explosives and snipers.
Iraq and its fighting partners have launched in the last hours information leaflets about the west of Mosul to warn its inhabitants of the imminent assault, and to ask them to do not use any vehicle so as not to be confused by the air forces with the cars of the Islamic State.
“We assure everyone that in a short space of time, God willing, we will declare the liberation of western Mosul and we will raise the Iraqi flag in the Old City,” Rasool said. “The decisive hour is approaching,” the informational pamphlets say.
On 17 October Iraq and its partners launched a major offensive on Mosul to defeat the Islamic State in its main Iraqi feud. Last January they were able to liberate all the neighborhoods located to the east of the Tigris river and now they try to do the same with the western area.