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Daesh Underground Tunnels, Ruins Still Harbor Danger in Liberated Mosul (PHOTOS)

© Sputnik / Sara Nureddin Situation in Mosul, 25/07/2017
Situation in Mosul, 25/07/2017 - Sputnik International
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The liberation of Mosul, the former citadel of Daesh terrorists in Iraq, was officially declared on July 9, but danger still lurks everywhere in the city.

MOSUL (Sputnik) – The militants have left a rich "legacy" of mines, booby-traps, car bombs and blown-up mosques and buildings.

A Sputnik correspondent visited the city and found that mainly building foundations and rickety minarets are left of Mosul.

© Sputnik / Sara Nureddin Situation in Mosul, 25/07/2017
Situation in Mosul, 25/07/2017 - Sputnik International
Situation in Mosul, 25/07/2017

The Great Mosque

Smoke billows after airstrikes hit Islamic State positions on the edge of the Old City a day after Iraq's prime minister declared total victory in Mosul, Iraq, Tuesday, July 11, 2017. - Sputnik International
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The Great Mosque of al-Nuri, a local historical landmark, used to tower above central Mosul. This mosque also had tremendous significance for Iraq and Daesh. It was at this mosque that in June 2014, Daesh leader Abu Bakr Baghdadi proclaimed the creation of the so-called Caliphate, naming himself its Caliph.

Only ruins are left of the mosque built over 900 years ago. One can only see marble columns and a dome that has survived by sheer miracle. Sunlight is seeping through giant cracks in the dome.

Historians say that the mosque had suffered during various military conflicts over the past 900 years. It has been rebuilt several times, and only the mihrab (a semicircular niche in the wall indicating the direction of Mecca) remained unchanged.

© AFP 2021This July 5, 2014 photo shows an image grab taken from a propaganda video released by al-Furqan Media allegedly showing the leader of the Islamic State (IS) jihadist group, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, aka Caliph Ibrahim, adressing Muslim worshippers at a mosque in the militant-held northern Iraqi city of Mosul
This July 5, 2014 photo shows an image grab taken from a propaganda video released by al-Furqan Media allegedly showing the leader of the Islamic State (IS) jihadist group, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, aka Caliph Ibrahim, adressing Muslim worshippers at a mosque in the militant-held northern Iraqi city of Mosul - Sputnik International
This July 5, 2014 photo shows an image grab taken from a propaganda video released by al-Furqan Media allegedly showing the leader of the Islamic State (IS) jihadist group, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, aka Caliph Ibrahim, adressing Muslim worshippers at a mosque in the militant-held northern Iraqi city of Mosul

From Flour to Bombs

A residential area with two-story and three-story buildings is located around the mosque. The building's ground floors accommodate small stores. The entire vicinity now reeks of death as the streets are virtually littered with the unburied bodies of dead militants.

A local store is cluttered with 50-kilogram flour bags reading "Daesh-Agriculture Chancellery-Nineveh Governorate." In an effort to make extra profits, Daesh terrorists staying in Mosul filled their custom-made bags with flour and sugar and sold them to the city residents.

© Sputnik / Sara Nureddin Situation in Mosul, 25/07/2017
Situation in Mosul, 25/07/2017 - Sputnik International
Situation in Mosul, 25/07/2017

We found a facility for making car bombs around the corner. A ready-made Hyundai car bomb standing there is covered with steel sheets for protecting its driver, increasing his chances of hitting any target. Gas tanks are placed in the rear seat while a detonation device is located near the steering wheel.

The terrorists apparently planned to blow up the car after the Iraqi army units advanced in this district but the militants never got their chance to carry out the attack.

War Not Over

Airstrikes target Islamic State positions on the edge of the Old City a day after Iraq's prime minister declared total victory in Mosul, Iraq, Tuesday, July 11, 2017 - Sputnik International
Mosul's 40,000 Victims: 'US Military Doesn't Take Losses Into Account'
We reached the Maydan district accompanied by a soldier who was always walking a few steps ahead of us to ensure security and check the road for mines. The operation on clearing the buildings of explosive devices is underway here.

Suddenly, we heard a powerful explosion down the road after which a vehicle drove off the bodies of two bomb technicians. Unfortunately, such incidents are commonplace here even since the battle for Mosul ended.

© Sputnik / Sara Nureddin Situation in Mosul, 25/07/2017
Situation in Mosul, 25/07/2017 - Sputnik International
Situation in Mosul, 25/07/2017

Terrorist Underground Hideouts

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Secret Insurgent Tactics: Daesh May Go Underground to Survive Mosul Offensive
Almost every building in central Mosul has a basement. Daesh militants used these basements to their advantage by digging tunnels between buildings and hiding underground. Terrorists also captured hostages and quite often hold entire families inside these basements, placing explosives at the entrances.

Iraqi security services found a way to neutralize Daesh's "underground tactics." Instead of attacking basements that are swarming with armed militants, they merely sealed off an area and waited for the terrorists to come out with their hands up.

© Sputnik / Sara Nureddin Situation in Mosul, 25/07/2017
Situation in Mosul, 25/07/2017 - Sputnik International
Situation in Mosul, 25/07/2017

"The security forces surrounded these districts around a month ago. This strategy has proved effective. Instead of attacking hideouts and basements and losing our soldiers, we just sit it out. They come out after running of water and food stocks because they have no other choice. There is no power underground, and they are suffering from extremely high temperatures inside the basements," a senior security source said.

Many terrorists surrendered to the army after over the past few days failing to endure their underground prisons.

"The largest group of 40 militants gave up six days ago. Some other militants have failed to flee the city together with refugees," the source noted.

The remaining militants are being monitored by Iraqi forces, according to the source.

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