Victory at last in Mosul. Iraqi soldiers have driven Islamic State militants from their last redoubt in the Old City. Reuters' Stephen Kalin is in Mosul.>> We're on the banks of the Tigris River just south of the Old City, where Iraq's Federal Police are celebrating what they expect to be imminent victory.
The soldiers here are shooting up in the air, dancing, waving flags to celebrate the approaching end of more than an eight month battle here in Mosul.>>
> Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi arriving amid the ruins on Sunday to congratulate his troops. Nearly nine months of urban warfare have devastated swathes of Mosul, killed thousands of people, and driven nearly 1 million from their homes.
Militants' corpses decaying in the Old City's narrow streets as US-trained elite Iraqi forces moved in.>> We don't really know how many fighters from Islamic State are left. The last estimate we had a couple weeks ago was two or three hundred. But they really dug themselves in in this last patch of Mosul.
There's also a lot of civilians, upwards of 10,000 civilians lodged into these areas.>> It was from Mosul three years ago that Islamic State declared its so-called caliphate, which spanned adjoining parts of Iraq and Syria. It became the de facto capital. The jihadists' domain has strike to stretches of desert to the west and south of the city and a swathe of eastern Syria, including Raqqa.
They vowed to fight to the death in Mosul, but 30 of them were killed trying to swim to safety across the Tigris River. Iraq's military said, as they made their last stand, the militants resorted to sending females suicide bombers among the thousands of civilians who were emerging from the battlefields, wounded, malnourished, and afraid.