U.S.-backed Iraqi forces pushed deeper into the last pocket of Mosul controlled by Islamic State (IS) militants yesterday, as the battle for the city approaches an end after seven months of Herculean urban combat, the Reuters website reports today (May 15, 2017).
The IS militants have now been dislodged from all but a handful of districts in the western half of Mosul including the Old City, where IS is expected to make its last stand, taking advantage of narrow streets and its dense population.
Brigadier General Yahya Rasoul said the area controlled by Islamic State was no more than 9 percent of west Mosul, which is bisected by the Tigris River.
"It's a very small area," he told Reuters. "God willing, this is the final phase."