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Iraqi forces free Mosul neighborhood on day 3 of renewed push

31 December 2016 18:17

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Iraqi security forces have freed a neighborhood of the northern Iraqi city of Mosul on the third day of a renewed push to liberate the city from Daesh.

The Quds neighborhood was reportedly freed by Iraqi forces on Saturday.

An Izadi woman who had been held captive by the Takfiri Daesh terrorists in the neighborhood but had later been left on her own reportedly provided information to security forces in the operation to free Quds.

The 42-year-old woman, who had been kidnapped from her hometown of Sinjar in 2014, had been held in captivity in Quds. However, her captors left as security forces closed in on the neighborhood on Thursday.

According to Major General Maan Saadi, of the elite Counter Terrorism Service (CTS), the woman, whose name was not publicized, provided information that helped the Iraqi forces recapture al-Quds.

Back in August 2014, Daesh militants overran Sinjar, killing, raping, and enslaving large numbers of Izadi Kurds. The town was later recaptured on November 13, 2015, during a two-day operation by Peshmerga forces and Izadi fighters.

The Office of Kidnapped Affairs in the northern Iraqi city of Duhok says around 3,500 Izadi Kurds are being held captive in Daesh-held areas and a large proportion of the abductees are women and children.

Izadi women cry as they attend a demonstration at a refugee camp in Diyarbakir, southeastern Turkey, to mark the second anniversary of a Daesh massacre in Sinjar. (Photo by Reuters)

 

According to the CTS, the al-Quds neighborhood has now been liberated and the Iraqi flags are hoisted on top of buildings there.

Meanwhile, the Iraqi Federal Police Forces have killed three Daesh commanders during an operation in another neighborhood of Mosul.

Iraqi forces have cleared the recently recaptured village of Sada, north of Mosul, of the last pockets of Daesh terrorists.

The army is now moving toward an area that separates the villages of Sada and Bawiza, north of Mosul, from the Chaldean town of Tel Kaif, also known as Tel Keppe.

A local source, who spoke anonymously, said Daesh has evacuated dozens of the families of its foreign militants from four neighborhoods in western Mosul and moved them to an unknown location.

Mosul, located some 400 kilometers north of the capital, Baghdad, is the last urban area under the control of Daesh in Iraq.

On October 17, Iraqi army soldiers, supported by pro-government Popular Mobilization Units and Kurdish Peshmerga forces, launched a joint operation to retake Mosul from Daesh terrorists.

The Iraqi forces’ advance has, however, been slowed down due to the presence of hundreds of thousands of civilians, many of whom are prevented from leaving Mosul by Daesh.

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