ISIL’s Families Reach Terrorist-Held Region in Hasaka Province After Leaving Mosul
“ISIL’s families, including over 25 foreign families, escorted by military convoys reached the town of Merkedeh today,” a local source said.
The source also said that the ISIL has evacuated the families of its militants from Mosul as the Zero hour for the final large-scale offensive on the city by Iraq’s joint military forces is approaching.
Earlier on Sunday, local sources in Nineveh province disclosed that the ISIL terrorist group has brought to a halt all activities of its security offices in the city of Mosul.
“The ISIL has recently issued a circular in Mosul city according to which all its offices will halt operation until further notice,” a local source said.
The source noted that the ISIL has already evacuated its security offices in several districts of Mosul in recent days, while many ISIL members seem confused.
Earlier on Sunday, it was reported that the Iraqi army troops had been deployed 15 kilometers from Mosul city and the country’s volunteer forces (Hashd al-Shaabi) were waiting for announcement of the zero hour to attack ISIL’s military positions.
“The reconnaissance operation in Mosul ended; we are waiting for the operations to kick off,” Hashd al-Shaabi announced in a statement.
The Iraqi volunteer forces also reiterated their full preparedness to start Mosul liberation operations.
On Saturday, a source from the Iraqi volunteer forces disclosed that the operations to liberate Mosul would start in coming days.
“Everything has been prepared for starting the military operations in Mosul, only the zero hour to kick off the attack on ISIL’s military positions in the city is yet to be announced,” the volunteer forces source said.
The source reiterated that Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi has approved the volunteer forces’ participation in the Mosul operation.
The Iraqi media had earlier reported that the Mosul operations will start from several directions, the most important of which are al-Qayyara axis located 60 kilometers to the South of Mosul and Sahl Nineveh located 20 kilometers to the East of Mosul.
Several Iraqi army units have been stationed in the Northern part of Mosul over past two days.
Also on Saturday, a senior commander of the Iraqi popular forces stressed his forces resolve to block the escape path of ISIL terrorists from Mosul to Syria.
“Our forces will not allow the ISIL militants to flee to Syria and we have gathered precise intelligence about the enemy before starting the Mosul liberation operation,” Ahmad al-Assadi, also the spokesman of the popular forces and an Iraqi legislator, said in a statement.
He also rejected media reports on the Iraqi army’s agreement with the ISIL to leave Mosul, and said, “There is no deal and the ISIL militants in Nineveh will by crushed in the Mosul battle.”
His remarks came as reports said that the US is hindering Iraq’s operations in Mosul to provide the ISIL terrorists with an opportunity to flee to Raqqa in Syria.
An Iraqi Kurdish media official said early this month that ISIL’s top commanders, including its leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, have started fleeing Mosul for Syria, adding that as the terrorist group’s leader has ordered militants to destroy the city if defeated and forced to withdraw.
“The ISIL commanders, including al-Baghdadi, are escaping Mosul to Syria,” Iraqi Kurdistan Democrat Party’s media director Saeed Mamouziti said.
He said that al-Baghdadi has also ordered his followers to completely destroy Mosul if they are defeated in the war against Iraq’s joint military forces.
Later Mamouziti said that the ISIL militants are fleeing the city since a long-awaited large-scale operation aimed at freeing the second largest city in the country is expected to be launched in the coming days.