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Iraq Repels IS Offensive Near Mosul, 38 Killed

A tank of the Iraqi Army’s 9th Armored Division is seen at the frontline at the al-Zanjili District in Mosul, Iraq, on June 10.A tank of the Iraqi Army’s 9th Armored Division is seen at the frontline at the al-Zanjili District in Mosul, Iraq, on June 10.

Iraqi forces repelled an offensive launched in the early hours of Saturday by the self-styled Islamic State terrorist group on the Sunni town of Shirqat, south of Mosul, during which 38 military and civilians were killed and about 40 more wounded, security sources said.

IS lost 24 fighters in the attack, which ended around midday, the sources said.

About half the dead in the city and its surroundings were civilians and the rest members of the Iraqi armed forces and Sunni tribal fighters, Reuters reported.

Authorities declared a curfew in the region between Mosul and the Iraqi capital Baghdad.

IS lost Shirqat to US-backed Iraqi government forces and tribal fighters last year. Its fall paved the way for the offensive on Mosul, the militants’ de-facto capital in Iraq.

Eight months into the US-backed offensive to take back Mosul, all of the city has been retaken by Iraqi government forces except an enclave by the western bank of the Tigris River.

The militants continue to control pockets south and west of Mosul, as well as swathes of territory near the border with Syria and inside Syria.

 

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