More than two dozen Takfiri Daesh terrorists have been killed as Iraqi government forces, backed by volunteer fighters from Popular Mobilization Units, are fighting fierce street battles to close in on the strategic Grand al-Nuri Mosque in the western part of Mosul.
Commander of Federal Police Forces Lieutenant General Raed Shaker Jawdat said on Saturday that Iraqi Air Force unmanned aerial vehicles had struck Daesh positions near the mosque, where purported Daesh ringleader Ibrahim al-Samarrai aka Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi gave his famous speech on the formation of the terror group, Arabic-language al-Sumaria television network reported.
He said 30 extremists had been killed and 12 outposts destroyed in the operation.
The United Nations says nearly half a million civilians have fled fighting since the offensive to retake Mosul from the Daesh terrorists started on October 17, 2016.
The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said on April 17 that 493,000 people had been displaced from the city, located some 400 kilometers north of the capital Baghdad.