Mosul offensive: ISIS attack on Kirkuk is repelled as heavy fighting rages on around Mosul

kirkuk

ISIS fighters mounted an attack on Kirkuk, just over 100 miles south-east of Mosul, while a sulphur plant near Mosul was set on fire, creating a toxic cloud. Noxious fumes drifted towards Qayyarah West airfield, forcing US troops stationed there to wear protective masks. Qayyarah West is the main staging area for US air assets supporting the ground offensive to retake Mosul.

Meanwhile, a large ISIS contingent mounted an attack on the south-eastern city of Kirkuk. ISIS incurred heavy losses, and the assault was ultimately deemed ineffective. Analysts believe ISIS staged this move to divert attention from Mosul.

Local sources on the ground also report that people trapped inside Mosul have began launching hit-and-run attacks against ISIS militia, in what is seen as an uprising against their tyrannical grip on the city.

US engineers also report that all accesses to Mosul are heavily booby-trapped and covered by sniper fire, making progress slow and extremely hazardous.

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