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Displaced in Mosul as Iraqi Troops Dig Deeper into Islamic State Territory

Displaced in Mosul as Iraqi Troops Dig Deeper into Islamic State Territory

A auto bomb explodes next to Iraqi special forces armored vehicles as they advance towards Islamic State held territory in Mosul on Wednesday.

In Iraq, forces faced stiff resistance today from Islamic State militants as they pushed deeper into eastern Mosul, backed by aerial support from the US-led worldwide coalition.

The troops fighting in Mosul's eastern side laid siege Sunday to the Al-Zohour neighborhood, about eight kilometers (five miles) from the city center.

He says a civilian woman was wounded and adds that troops were going from house to house in four neighborhoods recently retaken from IS looking for vehicles intended for use in future suicide bombings.

Iraqi forces launched the operation a month ago but have only advanced into a few eastern districts.

ISIS is continuing their strategy of sniper fire to slow the advance of ground troops, punctuated by the occasion suicide auto bombing. The campaign is being assisted by airstrikes from the US -led military coalition.

Army troops arrived on the outskirts of Tal Afar, west of Mosul, to reinforce state-sanctioned Shiite militias, who have captured the town's airport and are preparing to retake the town, according to two senior militia officials. An officer speaking on condition of anonymity said they controlled it for several hours until aerial support was requested from the US-led global coalition.

Mosul, some 400 km north of Iraqi capital of Baghdad, has been under the IS control since June 2014, when Iraqi government forces abandoned their weapons and fled, enabling IS militants to take control of parts of Iraq's northern and western regions.

Earlier this week, the militias announced the capture of the Tal Afar air base. "We are working as quickly as we can and in close coordination with Iraqi authorities to help some of the most at-risk people in the world".