Peshmargah retakes town of Makhmur from Islamic State ahead of planned offensive for Mosul

 Peshmerga retakes-town-of-Makhmur-from-Islamic-State-ahead-of-planned-offensive-for-Mosul.  MAKMUHR, Kurdistan of Iraq,  The Peshmerga recaptured the town of Makhmur from Islamic State militants as part of the military’s overall plan to neutralize the insurgent stronghold of Mosul, officials said Monday.

Peshmargah retakes-town-of-Makhmur-from-Islamic-State-ahead-of-planned-offensive-for-Mosul
Peshmerga takes up position in Makhmur, northwest of Erbil, Kurdistan region, Iraq, in 2014. Monday, officials said Iraqi forces recaptured the town from Islamic State militants with help from coalition airstrikes. Forces have been fighting in the area for about two years. Photo by Mohammed al Jumaily/UPI | License Photo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Coalition forces targeted militants in the town with airstrikes, news media reported Monday.

“The coalition forces did not participate in strikes inside the village but conducted airstrikes against the [Islamic State] militants when they escaped the village,” Iraqi officer Amin Shekhani said.

“We asked the coalition forces to keep the Daesh snipers in check but were told that, due to the large numbers of civilians involved,” he said previously.

Shekhani told Rudaw that 123 families were believed to be inside the village, with only 25 Islamic militants. At least three Iraqi soldiers were reportedly wounded.

Thousands of soldiers have been fighting on the Makhmur front for about three months, trying to oust Islamic State militants there near a U.S. Marine base called “Fire Base Bell.” Last month, the U.S.-led coalition provided air cover for the Iraqi army in the area.

In March, a U.S. soldier was killed there during the support operation.

The operation in Makhmur is part of Operation Inherent Resolve, which reportedly includes a planned future offensive in Mosul — a major Islamic State stronghold — which has been under the group’s control for two years.

Officials also said Monday that operations against militant targets in Syria were also carried out over the weekend.

By Doug G. Ware

UPI NEWS

Edited by The New Mail