The Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) were moving ahead to capture the last remaining area of west Mosul under Islamic State control. The Tamuz 17, Harmat 3, Idamat al-Tamas, and Hawi Kanisa neighborhoods were all freed by the Golden, Rapid Reaction Division, and 16th Divisions. The last one for the second time. The ISF were still pushing into Iqtisadin as well. The army chief of staff is talking about freeing all of Mosul before Ramadan, which is in two weeks. Some Ninewa officials are skeptical of that timeline believing that the Old City section will be a tough fight taking another month. Whatever the timeframe the Islamic State on its last leg in the city.
A Ninewa official told New Sabah that the Islamic State is preparing for their last stand in the Old City in west Mosul. The group was reportedly looting people’s food, and telling them to leave behind the old and wounded because they can’t take care of them.
The Hashd are moving on the town of Qayrawa in western Ninewa. The operation started yesterday and resulted in 21 towns being taken. On May 13, another six were seized. After Qayrawa these forces will move on Baaj, and then the Syrian border. Months ago, the Hashd surrounded the town of Tal Afar west of Mosul. They were not allowed to take the town however, because of complaints by Turkey. That led to growing frustration. Finally, the government gave them the task of sweeping through western Ninewa to occupy them.
The new push on northwest Mosul is causing a huge number of people to flee the city. From May 9-10 around 11,000 arrived at Hamam al-Alil. That was topped by 20,000 more on May 11. The Norwegian Refugee Council said this was the highest amount of people coming out of the city since the start of the year. The displaced (IDPs) told aid agencies that people were starving in IS controlled areas. Health groups taking care of the displaced have noted growing malnutrition for at least two months now. The situation is also complicated because many people want to move to east Mosul after they register with the government. That’s been impossible because of flooding of the Tigris, which has shut down the bridges. The United Nations opened a new camp south of Mosul, but with the new outflow that will likely be filled quickly. Many do not like living in the camps because of the restrictions on their movement and lack of work. That’s a major reason why IDPs now want to get to east Mosul instead.
Agence France Presse, “Number of civilians fleeing Mosul swells: aid group,” 5/13/17
Anadolu Agency, “Iraq: Pro-gov’t forces take 5 border villages,” 5/13/17
Baghdad Post, "Iraqi forces recapture 3 new districts in Mosul's right bank," 5/13/17
- "Security forces making progress in northern, western axes of Mosul," 5/11/17
Al Mada, “Liberation of Mosul Old City without a clear senior despite the optimism of the leadership,” 5/13/17
Mostafa, Nehal, "one more district recaptured, civilians wounded in western Mosul," Iraqi News, 5/13/17
New Sabah, “The insurgents are forced to live in family houses of its supporters,” 5/13/17
NINA, “PMF Liberate 21 Villages, Kills 77 Terrorist in the First Day of Mohammed Rasool Allah II Operations,” 5/12/17
Rojkan, Mira, “Iraqi Forces Regain Further Ground in Western Mosul,” Bas News, 5/13/17
Rudaw, “Hashd al-Shaabi controls road into Shingal, Iraqi forces take districts in Mosul,” 5/13/17
- “Repairs spur construction market in Mosul,” 5/13/17
UN High Commissioner for Refugees, “As 1000s flee Mosul, UNHCR opens 12th new camp for displaced,” 5/12/17
- “Iraq Situation: UNHCR Flash Update – 11 May 2017,” 5/11/17
Xinhua, “Iraqi forces fight IS in western Mosul, paramilitary units push to border areas with Syria,” 5/13/17
- “Iraqi paramilitary forces free 6 IS-held villages amid new push in west of Mosul,” 5/13/17