>> Victory at last in Mosul, Iraqi soldiers have driven Islamic State militants from their last redoubt in the old city. Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi arriving amid the ruins on Sunday to congratulate his troops. Nearly nine months of urban warfare have devastated swedes of Mosul, killed thousands of people, and driven nearly a million from their homes.
Miltitants' corpses decaying in the old city's narrow streets as US trained elite Iraqi forces moved in. 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 shrunk to stretches of desert to the west and south of the city and a swathe of easter Syria including Rakka.
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 female suicide bombers among the thousands of civilians who were emerging from the battlefield wounded, malnourished and afraid.