#MosulOps: Iraqi forces battle waves of suicide car bombs

#MosulOps: Iraqi forces battle waves of suicide car bombs
Islamic State militants are using car bombs and explosives to fight Iraqi forces advancing in the battle to recapture the city from the militants.
2 min read
13 November, 2016
Iraqi troops are converging from several fronts on the city [Anadolu]
Iraqi forces battled waves of suicide car bombs on Sunday as they attempted to advance deeper into Mosul in the face of heavy resistance from the Islamic State [IS] group.

Troops are converging from several fronts on the city, Iraq's second largest, and the extremists' last major holdout in the country.

The Special Forces advanced the furthest so far, and hold a handful of urban districts.

Officers said they cleared the neighbourhoods of Qadisiya and Zahra, and are planning to advance further in the coming hours.

Over the past week they have inched forward slowly, trying to avoid casualties among their troops and civilians as suicide bombers in armour-plated vehicles rush forward from hiding spots among densely populated areas.

"The only weapons they have left are car bombs and explosives," said Iraqi special forces Major General Sami al-Aridi as he radioed with commanders in the field.

"There are so many civilian cars and any one of them could be a bomb," he said.

See here: A first glimpse inside Mosul 

Several suicide car bombers attacked in the same area on Saturday, wounding around a dozen troops, three civilians, and killing a child, officers said.

The troops are building berms and road blocks to prevent car bombs from breaching the front lines. Since last week's quick advance into Mosul proper, they have struggled to hold territory under heavy IS counterattacks.

The Iraqi armed forces do not release official casualty figures, but field medics have noted dozens of killed and wounded since the operation to liberate the city began on October 17.