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Saturday 16 December 2017

Iraqi forces just 'tens of metres' from pushing IS out of Mosul

An Iraqi army soldier patrols a damaged street as the country's forces advance against IS in Mosul (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)
An Iraqi army soldier patrols a damaged street as the country's forces advance against IS in Mosul (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

Iraqi forces are "tens of metres" from defeating Islamic State in Mosul, say commanders.

The announcement comes a day after a major counterattack by IS.

The militants hold less than one square mile of territory but are using civilians as human shields, making it nearly impossible for US-led warplanes to flush them out.

The Joint Operations Command said "our units are still continuing to advance... Not much is left before our forces reach the river."

Iraqi officials made similar pronouncements over the past week as security forces bottled the militants up in a sliver of the Old City along the River Tigris.

But the troops' progress has slowed in recent days.

The operation to retake Mosul, Iraq's second largest city, began in October.

AP

Press Association

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