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Heavy Fighting Continues in Mosul’s Old City After Mosque Area Liberation

© REUTERS / Erik De CastroSmoke billows from the ruined Grand al-Nuri Mosque after it was retaken by the Iraqi forces at the Old City in Mosul, Iraq June 29, 2017
Smoke billows from the ruined Grand al-Nuri Mosque after it was retaken by the Iraqi forces at the Old City in Mosul, Iraq June 29, 2017 - Sputnik International
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Despite the liberation of the al-Nouri mosque area, the Iraqi forces continue fighting against the Daesh terrorists in the area of old city of Mosul, according to Operation Inherent Resolve spokesperson Ryan Dillon.

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The Iraqi forces continue their advance on two remaining holdouts of the Islamic State [Daesh] terrorists (banned in Russia) in the city of Mosul after liberation of the al-Nouri mosque area, Operation Inherent Resolve spokesperson Ryan Dillon said in a briefing on Thursday.

"This morning, in a dawn assault, the Iraqi Counterterrorism Service forces pushed further into the old city successfully liberating the al-Nouri mosque area," Dillon told reporters. "The old city still remains a difficult, dense, suffocating fight."

Smoke rises above the old city as Iraqi forces fight Islamic State militants in Mosul, Iraq, April 19, 2017 - Sputnik International
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The spokesperson noted that he expects Mosul to be fully liberated soon.

"I see it closer to days than a week or weeks," he stated.

Dillon said the government of Iraq will decide where to move forces after the city is free, adding that the Daesh’s holdouts remain in Hawija, Tal Afar, and Al Qaim.

Earlier in the day, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Abadi said Mosul's liberation proves that the existence of the "fake" Daesh is ending.

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