Date
11 December 2016
Iraqi security forces launch a rocket towards Islamic State militants during clashes at a frontline southeast of Mosul on Nov. 3. Photo: Reuters
Iraqi security forces launch a rocket towards Islamic State militants during clashes at a frontline southeast of Mosul on Nov. 3. Photo: Reuters

No plan so far for US advisers to go into Mosul

Iraq has no plans, as of now, to have American military advisers accompany Iraqi forces inside the city of Mosul, which is sought to be retaken from the Islamic State, according to a US spokesman.

“There is no plan for coalition forces to go in there. And the Iraqis have said, it’s just gonna be their forces,” Reuters quoted John Dorrian, a Baghdad-based spokesman for the US-led coalition, as saying Thursday.

US troops have been accompanying and advising Iraqi forces in fighting on the outskirts of Mosul since Baghdad launched its assault toward the city two weeks ago, keeping some distance behind the fast-shifting front lines of contact.

The campaign is expected to become more complicated as the fighting moves squarely into Mosul, particularly given the risk to the estimated 1.5 million civilians still in the city.

US officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Reuters that the definition of Mosul might not include some of the suburbs of the city.

This suggests that the US personnel plan to confine themselves to the surrounding areas but not actually move inside the city along with the Iraqi forces, limiting their role in the battle.

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