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Mosul freed from Islamic State: 5 things you need to know

09:16 AM Jul 10, 2017 | Agencies

Mosul: Iraq declared victory against the Islamic State group in Mosul today after a gruelling months- long campaign, dealing the biggest defeat yet to the jihadist group. Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi’s office said he was in “liberated” Mosul to congratulate “the heroic fighters and the
Iraqi people on the achievement of the major victory,” three years after IS declared its self-styled caliphate from the city.

The fighting did not seem to be completely over, with gunfire and explosions still audible in the city, but Abadi’s arrival had been expected for days as a signal of the formal end of the battle for Mosul. The victory comes at an enormous cost: much of Iraq’s second city in ruins, thousands dead and wounded, and nearly a million people forced from their homes. And enormous challenges lie ahead, not just in rebuilding Mosul but in tackling the continued presence elsewhere of IS, which remains a potent force. Photographs released by his office showed Abadi dressed
in a black military uniform and cap, shaking hands with police and army officers.

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His office said Abadi held meetings with commanders in Mosul and issued a series of commands on “sustaining victories and eliminating the defeated remnants” of IS, as well as “establishing security and stability in the liberated city.” Iraqi forces celebrated, waving flags and flashing victory signs, after Abadi arrived in the city.”This victory is for all Iraqis, not just for us,” Mohanned Jassem, a member of the elite Counter-Terrorism Service, told AFP at the police base where Abadi met commanders. Jassem, who fought in most of the other main battles of the war against IS, said Mosul was the toughest. “I took part in fighting in Ramadi and Tikrit and Salaheddin and Baiji and Al-Qayara… but the fighting here in (IS’s) stronghold was the most violent,” he said, an Iraqi flag draped over his shoulders.

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“This victory is for all Iraqis, not just for us,” Mohanned Jassem, a member of the elite Counter-Terrorism Service, told AFP at the police base where Abadi met commanders. Jassem, who fought in most of the other main battles of the war against IS, said Mosul was the toughest. “I took part in fighting in Ramadi and Tikrit and Salaheddin and Baiji and Al-Qayara… but the fighting here in (IS’s) stronghold was the most violent,” he said, an Iraqi flag draped over his shoulders.

Iraq reclaims Mosul from Islamic State

  • Iraq PM Haider al-Abadi declaring victory

    Iraq’s prime minister showed up in the city of Mosul on Sunday to declare victory in the 9-month battle for control of the Islamic State’s former capital in Iraq, signaling the near-end of the most grueling campaign against the group

  • Is whole of Mosul free?

    It remained unclear whether a last pocket of territory, thought to span no more than a few hundred square yards, had been cleared of IS rebels. There were sounds of gunfire from the area in Mosul’s Old City before he arrived

  • IS targetting Iraq's largest city

    Mosul was the largest city to fall to Islamic State control. It was from the city’s medieval mosque that the group’s leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, declared the birth of a caliphate spanning swaths of Syria and Iraq

  • Iraqi forces launching campaign in October 2016

    Iraqi forces launched their campaign to recapture Mosul in October, seizing its eastern side in January and launching the battle for its western part the next month

  • Statement by United Nations

    The United Nations said this week that since October around 9,15,000 residents had fled Mosul, which had a population of two million three years ago.

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,Mosul,Islamic State,victory,Iraq,group
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