According to the latest US Central Command news release dated 29 December 2016,the Iraqi Security Forces have launched a simultaneous three-pronged attack on the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant's northern stronghold of Mosul,Iraq's second largest city,with a population of 664,221 as of 2015.The offensive is backed by the anti-ISIL Operation Inherent Resolve coalition air and artillery strikes.*
On the North Axis,units of the Iraqi Army 16th Division advanced south to claim more neighbourhoods.
On the East Axis,Counter Terrorism Service units pushed west and south along two fronts.
On the South Axis,federal police units began clearing neighbourhoods to the north.
The advance opens up two new fronts within the city,Iraqi officials said,hindering ISIL's ability to generate forces;move fighters;or resupply.*
Since the Mosul campaign began on 17 October 2016,the OIR coalition has struck the Islamist extremists with more than 7650 munitions.It restruck two Mosul bridges on 27 December and disabled the last bridge crossing the Tigris River in Mosul on 26 December.Such strikes crimp enemy freedom of movement and further disrupt ISIL's ability to reinforce,resupply and use VBIEDs in Eastern Mosul.
Besides air and artillery strikes,OIR provides Iraqi units with operational advice and assistance,as well as intelligence and logistics support at the request of the ISF.US Army Lieutenant General Sean McFarland is commander of OIR.