- Title: Civilians flee heavy fighting in eastern Mosul suburbs
- Date: 17th November 2016
- Summary: AL ZAHRAA, MOSUL, IRAQ (NOVEMBER 17, 2016) (REUTERS) DARK SMOKE RISING FROM BUILDINGS SKYLINE SUBURB, BUILDINGS (AUDIO OF EXPLOSION) SMOKE RISING FROM BUILDINGS CIVILIANS WALKING ON ROAD NEAR BUILDINGS, SOME CARRYING BELONGINGS SMOKE RISING FROM BUILDINGS (AUDIO OF GUNFIRE) SUBURB SKYLINE, HOUSES, SMOKE VARIOUS OF SKYLINE, BUILDINGS (AUDIO OF GUNFIRE, EXPLOSIONS) CHILDREN STANDING IN GROUP GIVING PEACE SIGN FROM BACK TERRACE OF HOUSE VEHICLE DRIVES ON ROAD, DUST, POWERLINES IN FOREGROUND CIVILIANS WALKING NEAR CREEK, CARRYING BELONGINGS POWER LINES AND BUILDINGS (AUDIO OF GUNFIRE) SUBURB, BUILDINGS (AUDIO OF LARGE EXPLOSION) SMOKE RISING FROM BUILDINGS VARIOUS OF CIVILIANS WALKING NEAR BUILDING CARRYING BELONGINGS, PUSHING MAN IN WHEEL CHAIR SMOKE PLUME RISES FROM BUILDING
- Embargoed: 2nd December 2016 12:36
- Keywords: al Zahraa Mosul fighting Islamic State Iraqi forces
- Location: AL ZAHRAA, IRAQ
- City: AL ZAHRAA, IRAQ
- Country: Iraq
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace,Military Conflicts
- Reuters ID: LVA00158U26O7
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Citizens of Mosul were seen fleeing eastern suburbs of the city on Thursday (November 17) as Iraqi troops clashed with Islamic State militants.
Large plumes of smoke rose over residential areas around al-Zahraa in eastern Mosul, including the al-Arabi Neighbourhood, amid heavy fighting and targeted strikes against the militant hideouts.
Iraqi Counter Terrorism Service (CTS) troops said on Tuesday (November 15) they had taken control of the al-Zahraa area.
CTS troops had faced fierce resistance from the militants over several days, as their opposition launched waves of suicide bombers, snipers and ambushes.
The CTS special forces spearheading the advance in to Mosul are part of a 100,000 strong force of army, security forces, Kurdish peshmerga fighters and mainly Shi'ite "Popular Mobilistaion" forces aiming to drive Islamic State from the Mosul, the largest city under their control is Iraq.
The operation, which entered its fourth week on Monday (November 14), is the most complex in Iraq in over a decade and is complicated by the presence of the more than one million civilians still living under Islamic State control.
More than 56,000 people have been displaced because of the fighting from villages and towns around the city to government-held areas, according to U.N. estimates.
The figure does not include the tens of thousands of people rounded up in villages around Mosul and forced to accompany Islamic State fighters to cover their retreat towards the city.
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