- Title: Iraqi forces 'liberate six villages' south of Mosul
- Date: 5th December 2016
- Summary: SHAYYALAH AL-IMAM, SOUTH OF MOSUL, IRAQ (DECEMBER 5, 2016) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF SOLDIERS FIRING MORTARS SOLDIER PUTTING MORTAR SHELL ON GROUND SOLDIER PUTING SHELL IN MORTAR LAUNCHER MORTAR FIRING SOLDIER ADJUSTING MORTAR GROUP OF SOLDIERS (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) NON-COMMISSIONED OFFICER SALAH AL-FARAJI, 6TH BRIGADE, 17TH DIVISION, SAYING: "We've liberated six villages and we are heading to Hawija and we will liberate, God willing and then we will head to Mosul." SOLDIER TAKING OUT MORTAR MORTAR SHELLS ON GROUND VARIOUS OF MORTARS FIRING MORTAR SHELLS HUMVEE DRIVING AT DISTANCE AREA GROUP OF SOLDIERS ON PICK-UP TRUCK CHEERING AND CHANTING WAVING THEIR ARMS GROUP OF SOLDIERS DANCING AND CHEERING MASKED SOLDIER ON TOP OF HUMVEE / HUMVEE DRIVING AWAY
- Embargoed: 20th December 2016 14:45
- Keywords: Iraq Mosul Islamic State offensive
- Location: SHAYYALAH AL-IMAM, SOUTH OF MOSUL , IRAQ
- City: SHAYYALAH AL-IMAM, SOUTH OF MOSUL , IRAQ
- Country: Iraq
- Reuters ID: LVA0015BLYWXZ
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Iraqi army said on Monday (December 5) that they had recaptured six villages south of the Islamic State-held city of Mosul.
The army's 6th Brigade, the 17th Division said the troops of the division have "liberated" the villages over the past three days, adding they will continue operations to liberate the remaining villages before heading to Hawija.
"We've liberated six villages and we are heading to Hawija and we will liberate, God willing and then we will head to Mosul," said non-commissioned officer Salah al-Faraji from the army's 17th Division.
Strategically located east of the road from Baghdad to Mosul and near the Kurdish-held oil region of Kirkuk, the region became an Islamic State stronghold when the ultra-hardline Sunni militants swept across northern and western Iraq in 2014.
Western-backed Iraqi forces have begun shelling areas of west Mosul for the first time, residents said, as they prepare to open a new front in their tough military campaign against Islamic State militants controlling the city.
Federal police forces, stationed a few miles south of Mosul, on the west bank of the Tigris River, aim to advance towards the airport on the southern edge of the city.
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