march on Mosul creeping forward. Under air support from the US led coalition, Iraqi government forces have captured eight villages south and southeast of the city. Kurdish fighters also claim to have ripped several villages to the north and east from the grasp of Islamic State.
e combined fire power at their disposal overwhelming, but this will be a hard fought victory.
The advance still sits on the edge of the city. Their progress complicated by Islamic State's use of unconventional tactics. On Thursday, a US service member died from wounds sustained in an improvised explosive blast. The push here an attempt to deny the Islamic State it's last major bastion in Iraq.
Aboard the USS Eisenhower, sorties by US jets have been stepped up to help the squeeze. But on the ground, thoughts are turning into the humanitarian impact. Islamic State have a history of using people as human shields. Around 1.5 million people are thought to still be trapped in Mosul.
So far the fight has forced some 5,600 people to flee according to the International Organization from Migration.>>
That number is only expected to grow. The UN says we could be looking at the largest humanitarian relief operation in the world.