The United States Department of Defense just made an announcement earlier today that the Islamic State command-and-control headquarters in western Mosul was destroyed by a coalition airstrike. Forces have struck a building in the main medical complex believed to house an Islamic State command center. The five-story Bab Sinjar administration building, which also served as a propaganda facility, was located in the Jumhuri medical community complex.
This airstrike is following reports that ISIS militants have hidden among civilians in Mosul and are storing weapons in hospitals, schools, mosques, and churches to avoid being targeted while they are under siege. Islamic State terrorists regularly use protected sites like hospitals, schools, and mosques for activities in their efforts to protect themselves from air strikes. US intelligence was able to determine that the building was no longer used for any medical purposes and that no civilians were present.
The offensive to dislodge Islamic State from Mosul, its last major city stronghold in Iraq, started in October. The hardline Sunni group declared in 2014 a self-styled “caliphate” that also spans parts of Syria.
Efforts to retake Mosul from the Islamic State have been ongoing for months. The Pentagon states the city is now fully encircled by Iraqi forces. This decreases the readiness of the ISIS forces since resupply is difficult.
The air strike was one of three in Mosul on Friday. The other strikes destroyed other Islamic State assets, including four watercraft, three front-end loaders, two shipping containers, a mortar system, an artillery system and a facility to make vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices.
The effort to retake Mosul from the Islamic State has been ongoing for months, and the Pentagon said Friday that the city is now fully encircled by Iraqi forces, decreasing the readiness of the ISIS forces since resupply is difficult.