Trump congratulates Iraqi PM over Mosul victory

Posted July 12, 2017

After more than eight months of fighting, US -backed Iraqi forces this week succeeded in liberating Mosul - Iraq's second-largest city - from the barbaric Islamic State movement.

Iraq's Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi declared victory over Islamic State in Mosul on Monday.

The accusation arrived three days before the USA and Iraqi forces declared victory in Mosul, marking a formal end to a violent offensive that spanned eight months and displaced some 87,000 residents.

After eight months of hard urban warfare, Iraqi military forces on June 29 captured the Mosul mosque at the heart of the strategic northern city, which Daesh had declared its de facto capital.

The fight dealt a huge blow to IS's so-called territorial caliphate, but has also killed thousands, left entire neighbourhoods in ruins and displaced almost 900,000 people from their homes.

US-backed forces have been closing in on the last redoubt in Syria of the Islamic State group after penetrating its Old City last week, but an estimated 2,500 jihadists are still defending the centre. So when Iraqi forces finally seized the city, it was only a matter of time before formal victory over IS was declared.

"Mosul liberated from ISIS: France pays homage to all those, who alongside our troops, contributed to this victory", French President Emmanuel Macron tweeted. "The ISIS suicide bombers are forcing us to do everything to confront them", he explained.

Plumes of smoke Monday grew larger than the strip of territory under IS control.

The SDF breached into the ancient citadel of Old Raqqa in the central part of the city, he said.

"The horrors that the people of Mosul have witnessed and the disregard for human life by all parties to this conflict must not go unpunished", said Lynn Maalouf, research director for Amnesty International in the Middle East.

"Many of the people who are in that situation are too weak even to cross the front line". "I saved two children and their mother, but one daughter, we couldn't reach her".

The battle to recapture west Mosul in Iraq from the clutches of Islamic State (IS) has created a "civilian catastrophe", a report has warned.

Much of Mosul has been destroyed in grinding street-to-street fighting. A toll that does not include those still believed buried under collapsed buildings.

But "operations are in their final stages", and "it is likely that (the fighting) will end today", he said.

The battle for Mosul lasted nearly nine months, left large areas in ruins, killed thousands of civilians and displaced more than 920,000 others.

February 19 — Iraqi forces begun the assault on western Mosul. A total of 195,000 civilians have also returned, mainly to the liberated areas of eastern Mosul. "And Moslawis have already started to return to their neighborhoods in the west".

Still, he was pleased to hear that the leaders of the Iraqi Security Forces were only willing to accept unconditional surrender.

Iraq's special forces held a flag-raising ceremony on the Tigris river bank and Iraqi army soldiers danced and sang to patriotic music Sunday.

Hezbollah chief also greeted the Lebanese army and security agencies for their mighty efforts to fight the takfiri groups in Arsal barrens and arrest the members terrorist cells as well as their masterminds and funders across the country.