05:04 GMT06 May 2021
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    Iraqi and Peshmerga forces are pausing the advance on Mosul to ensure rear areas are cleared of Islamic State fighters, but the US-led coalition will continue to conduct airstrikes against the militants, Operation Inherent Resolve spokesperson Col. John Dorrian said in a briefing on Friday.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — US-coalition forces have continued to conduct airstrikes against Daesh tunnels and other targets, as Iraqi forces remain about six to 12 miles from the city of Mosul, the spokesman added.

    "They’ve seen some tactics, techniques and procedures by Daesh that have led them to believe it’s in their interest to pause the advance in some areas to do some back-clearing and make sure their flanks and their rear are clear of Daesh," Dorrian told reporters.

    Dorrian said the move was not unexpected and did not represent a shift in the operation strategy.

    "After a couple days of refit, resupply, repositioning, I think they’ll be moving forward again," he stated.

    On October 17, Iraqi forces supported by Kurdish Peshmerga and US troops began the operation to retake the city of Mosul from Daesh, which has held it since June 2014.


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