Iraqi forces take control of most of Mosul airport from IS: Officials
Iraqi forces on Friday gained control of most of Mosul�s airport on the city�s southwestern edge and all of a sprawling military base next to it, Iraqi officials said.
Iraqi forces on Friday gained control of most of Mosul’s airport on the city’s southwestern edge and all of a sprawling military base next to it, Iraqi officials said.
The latest advancement is a key milestone in the first phase of the battle to rout Islamic State militants from the western part of Mosul.
According to the spokesman of the Joint Military Operation Command, Brigadier General Yahya Rasool, after a day of fierce fighting, most of the airport was under Iraqi forces’ control.
A federal police officer said fighting was still underway in a small northern section of the airport, with pockets of IS militants there.
Meanwhile, an Iraqi special forces official said his troops have retaken all of a sprawling military base adjacent to the airport. Both the federal police and special forces officials spoke on condition of anonymity in line with regulations.
The multi-pronged assault onto the base and the airport started at sunrise on Thursday, closely supported by U.S.-led coalition troops on the ground and airstrikes, as part of the battle to take the western half of Mosul that began six days ago.
Iraqi authorities declared Mosul’s eastern half “fully liberated” in January and afterwards largely paused operations to prepare for the fight for the city’s west.