After strategic gain, Iraqi, Kurdish forces try to push IS fighters further out
Friday, August 22, 2014 - 01:35
Iraqi and Kurdish forces are battling Islamic State fighters to retake two towns in northern Iraq, after their strategic win to take back control of Mosul Dam. Mana Rabiee reports.
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Kurdish TV shows Peshmerga and Iraqi forces battling Islamic State fighters near the town of Jawala, in northern Iraq.
They've already retaken one district northeast of Baghdad with help from U.S. air power, after weeks of clashes.
Now, security sources say they moved a convoy towards Jawala overnight and are trying recapture two other towns from the militants.
The fighting comes in the wake of one major success. Iraqi and Kurdish forces say they've fully secured the area around Mosul Dam which they recaptured from the militants on Monday.
Control of the dam -- Iraq's biggest -- gave the Islamists the ability to flood cities and cut off vital water and power supplies.
Such is its strategic importance that its takeover by the militants prompted the first U.S. airstrikes on Iraq since American troops pulled out of the country in 2011.
The U.S. Department of Defense says it's now carried out more than 90 airstrikes across Iraq, 60 of those near Mosul Dam.
It's just released video showing two of those airstrikes from Monday hitting Islamic State targets.
Meanwhile, Kurdish and Iraqi forces continue to recapture territory.
They say their next major objective is to win back Mosul itself, the biggest city in northern Iraq and under control of the Islamic State since June.
Their prize is just a half hour's drive downstream from the dam.
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