Iraq Declares End of Islamic State Caliphate

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With the capture of iconic Nuri mosque in Mosul, Iraq has declared the end of terrorist organization Islamic State group’s “caliphate”. It is from this mosque from where Islamic State proclaimed its self-styled caliphate three years ago in 2014.

The mosque’s destruction came after government forces launched an assault on the Old City, the last district of Mosul still under ISIL control.

Counter Terrorism Service (CTS) troops captured the al-Nuri Mosque’s ground in a “lightning operation”.

A U.S.-led international coalition is providing air and ground support to the Iraqi forces fighting in country against IS.

ISIS now controls less than a square mile inside of Mosul, but there were indications of forward momentum inside the city.

The jihadist group announced its self-styled “caliphate” on June 29, 2014, encompassing swathes of territory its fighters overran in Iraq and neighbouring Syria.

IS still controls territory west and south of the city, ruling over hundreds of thousands of people. Its de facto capital in Syria, Raqqa, is also close to falling.

While Iraqi forces have made good progress to reach the Nuri mosque, Iraqi commanders have warned that the battle for the Old City is far from over.

The jihadist group Islamic State (IS) came to the international scene in 2014 when it seized large swathes of territory in Syria and Iraq. It has become notorious for its brutality, including mass killings, abductions and beheadings. The group though has attracted support elsewhere in the Muslim world – and a US-led coalition has vowed to destroy it.

Its rule since then has been marked by repeated atrocities including mass beheadings and other executions documented in photos and videos that its supporters share online.

In recent months, this jihadist group IS has quickly claimed responsibility for a spate of attacks on civilians in Europe, especially in Britain and France.

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