In Baghdad, thousands of followers of an Iraqi Shiite cleric marched in front of the Turkish Embassy demanding the withdrawal of Turkish troops from a base near Mosul.
US President Barack Obama said that the fight in Mosul will be a tough one but the Islamists “will be defeated in Mosul”. Qaraqosh had a population of around 50,000 people prior to an August 2014 offensive across the Nineveh Plain east of Mosul that forced almost every resident to flee.
Estimates of IS fighters in Mosul range from about 3,000 to 5,000 fighters, but U.S. officials say Mosul is home to greater skilled IS fighters who are more dedicated to the fight and more ideologically zealous.
The Iraqi army and the Kurdish Peshmerga forces launch military operations in Khazar village, 35 kilometers south of Mosul, Iraq, on Oct. 18, 2016.
“They’re in defensive positions and just trying to protect themselves”. Commanders said men, women and children were forced into the line of fire.
“You can never find such a friend”.
Speaking at the Justice and Development Party’s parliamentary group meeting here, Yildirim said: “Our air forces have also participated in airstrikes in Mosul”.
He added: “It is impossible for us to stay out of it because there lies history for us”.
IS said it carried out 12 suicide attacks on Monday against the forces advancing on Mosul, including eight that targeted the peshmerga.
Iraqi army soldiers take down an Islamic State flag in the town of Hit in Anbar province, Iraq on October 10. “Troops are on the move on various axes of advance toward the city”, said Col. John Dorrian.
He warns that with more than 3 million people already displaced in Iraq, officials would struggle to cope with the exodus. “There will be advances and there will be setbacks”, he said.
Sign up to our daily newsletter for up to date global news and features. “We’re not ignoring Iran, but it has to be step by step”. The Islamic State group vowed to “defeat America” in a video claiming to show jihadist fighters patrolling the streets of Mosul after the launch of a major Iraqi offensive to retake the city.
Lt. Gen. Talib Shaghati, told reporters at a military base on Tuesday that up to 6,000 IS fighters are still inside the city.