Turkish consulate taken back from IS in Mosul

Turkish consulate in Mosul /Photo Kutup Dalgakiran

Kurdish news outlet Rudaw has reported that the Consulate General of Turkey in Mosul was captured from the Islamic State (IS) group in an operation run by Iraqi forces on Monday.

The headquarters of the commandership of Mosul released a written statement saying some official buildings such as the Governorate of Mosul and the Consulate General of Turkey were captured from IS.

Another statement from the Iraqi War Media Cell said that al-Sumud neighbourhood was completely taken from IS while more than 60 IS militants were killed during the Iraqi airstrikes in the al-Devvase neighbourhood of Mosul.

Speaking to Rudaw, Necm Cuburi said that several IS militants were killed during the operations.

“We made a remarkable improvement. There are only two official buildings out of our control. We guess there are about 900 hundred Daesh [Arabic acronym for the Islamic State group] militants in the region,” said Cuburi.

The Consulate General of Turkey was taken by IS on 11 June 2014. The IS militants had seized the building while taking Ozturk Yilmaz, the ambassador to Mosul, as well as 48 other people hostage. The hostages were released on 20 September 2014.

Last month, Iraqi forces launched the second phase of the military operation to liberate western Mosul from the Islamic State (IS) group.

The battle to take Mosul began in October and has been a long and arduous affair. According to security experts the operation will continue until at least the summer due to the presence of 650,000 civilians in the city and the number of IS fighters in the group’s stronghold in Iraq.