On Monday evening, a diverse coalition of Iraqi forces, Kurdish allies and thousands of Iraqi guerrillas noted fruitful first day in the battle for Mosul. Hundreds of square kilometers of territory and as many as 9 villages were taken from the control of ISIS. In General, the commanders had faced less resistance than expected.
The forces that play a key role in the offensive, cleared the 9 villages in the district with an area of about 200 square kilometers. The force East of Mosul secured control over a significant stretch of road Erbil-Mosul, a key strategic route.
Iraqi leaflets from aircraft fell on the city, calling on residents of Mosul to hide in their homes and to turn off the gas line. A few months ago, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi told CNN that he "expects" the population of Mosul, which has to rise up against their oppressors, when the operation will begin.
ISIS in recent months has built very complex defenses in the city, including tunnels, gates and trenches. Team Paton Walsh saw how the ISIS fighter rolls out from the tunnel outside the city in an attempt to ambush for the troops before blowing himself. "In Mosul will be a very tough fight," said Dorrian. In addition to air strikes and logistical support, the U.S. provides advice to Iraqi allies.
Currently, violence is limited to villages on the outskirts of the city. But the coalition is expected to face fierce resistance thousand soldiers of ISIS in the city center of Mosul, armed with car bombs and improvised explosive devices.
100 thousand troops will play a role in the operation, not all will take part in the attack on the city. Some of them will be secure position behind the front lines or play other supporting roles.
Force includes 54 thousand members of the Iraqi security forces and 40 thousand Kurdish fighters. Also 14 thousand paramilitaries - 9 thousand Sunni fighters, and 5 thousand of other minorities, including Christians, Turkmen and Yazidis.
ISIS militants captured Mosul in June 2014, the oil-rich city had 2 million inhabitants. Today, there are about 1 million inhabitants.
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