NEW FRONT VIDEO: Peshmerga Fighters’ Clashes with ISIS near Iraq’s Mosul

Sun Aug 14, 2016 18:05:47

Iraq’s Kurdish forces have retaken five villages east of Islamic State (ISIS / Daesh / ISIL / IS) group-held Mosul in an operation launched early Sunday morning, according to Kurdish officials.

A statement by the Kurdish region's Security Council, an umbrella group of the different security forces in Iraq's northern Kurdish region, said the operation aims to "clear several more villages" and is "one of many shaping operations", which will increase pressure on Mosul.

Footage filmed by Rudaw, a local television network, showed peshmerga fighters trading fire versus ISIS positions, as armored vehicles pushed across the field and in a nearby village.

US-led coalition planes were supporting the operation and have destroyed a car bomb, according to the security statement.

Iraqi forces were starting to encircle Mosul before the full-scale offensive to retake the city from ISIS.

Mosul has been held by ISIS since 2014. It remains the last major urban stronghold of the militant group in Iraq.

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