Operations to liberate western Mosul will begin within weeks, Defence Secretary Michael Fallon has confirmed.
Speaking in Iraq, where local Iraqi and Coalition forces recently scored a major victory in the fight against I in eastern Mosul, Sir Michael welcomed the progress made in defeating Daesh in Iraq.
Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon said:
“Iraqi forces, supported by Britain and the Coalition, have made strong progress in the fight against Daesh. We’re keeping up the momentum with operations to liberate western Mosul due to start shortly.
This will be a more complex fight in a densely populated urban environment. Britain will continue playing its part providing precision strikes, vital intelligence, and training Iraqi forces to deal with explosive devices planted by Daesh.”
The Defence Secretary also announced that Britain will send a UK military officer to help lead NATO’s newly established training mission in Iraq, from July this year.
The liberation of eastern Mosul marked a major victory for Iraqi forces, who the Defence Secretary praised for their patient and deliberate operation, taking care to minimise the risk to civilians.
The RAF also played an important role in the Iraqi victory, providing sustained close air support to Iraqi troops. RAF Reaper aircraft played a particularly vital role, delivering precision attacks on Islamic State extremists engaged in street fighting, while also using its advanced sensors to alert Iraqi ground forces to the presence of civilians.