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Battle for Mosul: IS ‘blows up’ al-Nuri mosque

Battle for Mosul: IS ‘blows up’ al-Nuri mosque

BY BBC NEWS/KORIR JUMA,21ST JUNE,2017-So-called Islamic State (IS) has blown up the Great Mosque of al-Nuri in Mosul, Iraqi forces say.

The historic landmark was where the group’s leader proclaimed a “caliphate” in 2014.

Earlier on Wednesday, the commander of Iraqi forces told the BBC they were 15m from the mosque, as they pushed ahead with their offensive to retake the jihadists’ main stronghold in Iraq.

The UN says IS may be holding more than 100,000 people there as human shields.

Thousands of Iraqi security forces, Kurdish Peshmerga fighters, Sunni Arab tribesmen and Shia militiamen, assisted by US-led coalition warplanes and military advisers, are involved in the offensive against IS, which was launched on 17 October 2016.

The government announced the full “liberation” of eastern Mosul in January 2017. But the west of the city has presented a more difficult challenge, with its narrow, winding streets.

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