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Most Daesh commanders in Mosul killed in battles: Iraqi general

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Iraqi forces are seen on a military vehicle in the town of Bartalla on January 18, 2017, (Photo by AFP)

A senior Iraqi general says most Daesh commanders in Mosul have been killed in battles with armed forces over the past three months.

“The majority of (Daesh) commanders have been killed in the eastern side,” Lieutenant-General Abdul Ghani al-Assadi from the elite Counter-Terrorism Service (CTS)  told reporters on Thursday, while touring the newly retaken areas in the northern Iraqi city.

Since October 2016, the Iraqi army, backed by volunteer forces, has been pushing to drive Daesh terrorists out of their last urban stronghold in the Arab state.

“God willing, there will be an announcement in the next few days that all the eastern bank is under control,” Assadi added.

Latest reports from Mosul on Thursday said government troops had liberated Mosul’s Fazeliyeh neighborhood, as well as Tel Kef, a small town just to the north of the city.

An Iraqi Counter Terrorism Service (CTS) armored vehicle passes by on a road in eastern Mosul on January 19, 2017. (Photo by AFP)

The army is still battling Daesh militants in al-Arabi, the last district which remains under their control in eastern Mosul, according to the reports.

Assadi had announced on Wednesday that Daesh had been driven out of almost all of Mosul’s eastern half, and that the area had been brought under CTS control.

He said the next stage of the operation is to liberate the western side of Mosul.

“There will be a meeting in the next few days attended by all the commanders concerned with liberation operations,” added the senior military officials.

A total of 137,880 people have been displaced from Mosul and neighboring areas ever since the start of the operations, according to figures released by the International Organization for Migration on January 9.

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