Mosul

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Fighting Grows Fiercer in Mosul Neighborhoods

Church rings bells for first time since liberation

(Newser) - Iraqi troops faced stiff resistance Saturday from ISIS militants as they pushed deeper into eastern Mosul, backed by aerial support from the US-led international coalition, a senior military commander says. At dawn, troops moved into the Muharabeen and Ulama neighborhoods after fully liberating the adjacent Tahrir neighborhood on Friday, according... More »

Iraqi Military Finds 100 Decapitated Bodies in Mass Grave

Most were reduced to skeletons

(Newser) - The Iraqi military says it has found about 100 decapitated bodies in a mass grave south of the ISIS-held city of Mosul, the AP reports. The spokesman for the Joint Military Command, Brig. Gen. Yahya Rasool, says the bodies were discovered Monday near the agricultural college in the town of... More »

ISIS Leader Releases Message Amid Battle for Mosul

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi encourages loyalists to fight to the death

(Newser) - ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi has released a rare message amid a major coalition offensive against Mosul, the last major ISIS stronghold in Iraq. The undated audio recording is al-Baghdadi's first public communication in almost a year, the International Business Times reports. The tape didn't specifically mention the... More »

ISIS Documents Set Out Rules for Sex Slaves, Beards

Fighters advised to 'enjoy' underage girls

(Newser) - As ISIS retreats from villages surrounding Mosul, detailed evidence of the group's harsh rule is emerging. In documents discovered by Reuters in recently abandoned ISIS offices near the Iraqi city, the group sets out strict requirements for beard-growing, the proper way of praying—and the treatment of sex slaves.... More »

Iraqi Forces Reach Last Major Islamic State Stronghold

Losing Mosul would be major defeat for Islamic State

(Newser) - Iraq's special forces fought their way into the outskirts of Mosul on Tuesday, taking its state television building despite resistance by Islamic State group fighters that is only likely to stiffen when combat reaches the inner city, the AP reports. It was the first time Iraqi troops have set... More »

ISIS 'Massacring Mosul Residents'

UN fears group is killing its 'human shields'

(Newser) - As Iraqi forces close in on Mosul, ISIS appears to be stepping up its atrocities in the city. A senior intelligence source tells CNN that the group rounded up and killed 284 men and boys in southern Mosul on Thursday and Friday. The victims, including children, are believed to be... More »

Inside the Battle for Mosul

ISIS putting up fierce resistance in operation's first week

(Newser) - Iraq and Kurdish forces backed by a US-led coalition have begun what could be a long fight to recapture the city of Mosul from the Islamic State; it's the group's last major stronghold in the country. Related coverage on the fight and why it matters:
  • "Blood stained
... More »

'God Willing, We Will Take This Town Today'

Elite Iraqi forces advance on town of Bartella, which is near Mosul

(Newser) - Iraqi special forces charged into the Mosul battle Thursday with a pre-dawn advance on a nearby town held by ISIS, a key part of a multi-pronged assault on eastern approaches to the besieged city. As they advanced, attack helicopters fired on the militants and heavy gunfire echoed across the plains,... More »

This May Be 2016's Biggest Humanitarian Challenge

Some 1M civilians could flee Mosul, with 700K of them requiring shelter

(Newser) - The military operation to wrest Mosul from ISIS could become the single largest, most complex humanitarian operation in the world in 2016, a UN official said Monday. Lise Grande, the UN humanitarian coordinator for Iraq, said that in the worst case scenario, some 1 million civilians could flee the city,... More »

It Begins: 'Final Battle' for Biggest ISIS City

More than 35K troops launch push to retake Mosul

(Newser) - Iraq has launched what a military spokesman says is no less than a battle for the country's future: An operation to retake Mosul, once the country's second-largest city, from ISIS, which seized it more than two years ago, has begun. The US-led coalition is supporting Iraqi troops and... More »

US Sending 560 More Troops to Iraq

And getting ready to take Mosul back from ISIS

(Newser) - The US will send 560 more troops to Iraq to help recapture Mosul from Islamic State militants, Defense Secretary Ash Carter said Monday on an unannounced visit to the country. Most of the new troops will be devoted to the buildup of the newly retaken Qayara air base, about 40... More »

US Sending Choppers, 200 Troops to ISIS Fight

American troops will now be closer to the front lines

(Newser) - The US will deploy more than 200 additional troops to Iraq—upping the number from 3,870 to 4,087—and send Apache helicopters for the first time into the fight against ISIS in Iraq, the first major increase in US forces in nearly a year. The uptick in US... More »

Iraq Is Finally Trying to Reclaim City ISIS Took

'Operation Conquest' aims to grab Mosul back from militants

(Newser) - The Iraqi military, backed by US-led coalition aircraft, has launched a long-awaited operation to recapture the northern city of Mosul from ISIS, a military spokesman says. In the push, Iraqi forces retook several villages on the outskirts of the town of Makhmour, east of Mosul, early Thursday morning and hoisted... More »

Iraq's Shaky Dam Could Flood 1M in Hours

US Embassy warns Americans to have escape plan

(Newser) - Americans in Iraq should be poised to leave at any minute—but not because of any terrorist threat. In a security alert , the US Embassy in Baghdad notes more than a million people could be drowned or left homeless if Iraq's largest hydro-electric dam on the Tigris River breaks... More »

Swedish Girl Rescued From ISIS in Iraq

She was 'misled' by ISIS member in Sweden: Kurdish gov't

(Newser) - A Swedish girl has been freed from the clutches of the Islamic State in Iraq. Kurdish special forces rescued the 16-year-old Wednesday during a raid near Mosul, report Reuters and the AP . The teen—whom BuzzFeed identifies as Marlin Stivani Nivarlain—was "misled" by an ISIS member in Sweden... More »

ISIS Destroys Oldest Christian Monastery in Iraq

St. Elijah's Monastery is now 'a pile of rubble'

(Newser) - The oldest Christian monastery in Iraq has been reduced to a field of rubble, another apparent victim of the Islamic State's relentless destruction of ancient cultural sites. Satellite photos obtained exclusively by the AP confirm the worst fears of church authorities and preservationists—St. Elijah's Monastery of Mosul... More »

US-Led Airstrike Wipes Out ISIS Cash

Bombing in Mosul destroys 'millions,' says Pentagon

(Newser) - In what CNN frames as an "extremely unusual" move, a US airstrike on Sunday reportedly destroyed a massive amount of money at an ISIS storage facility in Mosul, Iraq. It's "probably" the biggest strike against the militant group's cash sites to date, a Pentagon official tells... More »

Pentagon: Iraq Strike Killed Benghazi Suspect

Al-Harzi was key ISIS connection, military says

(Newser) - An ISIS operative suspected of involvement in the 2012 attack on the US diplomatic outpost in Benghazi, Libya, has been killed in a US airstrike in Iraq, the Pentagon says. Ali Awni al-Harzi operated closely with ISIS-associated extremists "throughout North Africa and the Middle East," a Defense Department... More »

ISIS Torches Mosul's Ancient Books

Hundreds more Christians kidnapped in Syria

(Newser) - There are more ways than one to be barbaric, ISIS has demonstrated in Mosul. The militants, who seized the Iraqi city in June last year, have trashed its libraries and, by one estimate, have burned or otherwise destroyed more than 100,000 volumes, some of them rare and ancient, the... More »

Western Journo Visits ISIS: It's 'Much Stronger' Than We Think

'Hundreds' arrive daily to join group: Jürgen Todenhöfer

(Newser) - The first Western journalist to receive wide access to ISIS-controlled territories says the group is "much stronger and much more dangerous" than the West knows, the Independent reports. The ground it controls has "dimensions larger than the UK," Jürgen Todenhöfer, who has returned to Germany... More »

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