BAGHDAD (AP) — A Baghdad military spokesman says Iraqi forces have surrounded Islamic State militants in Mosul's Old City, leaving the extremists in control of only about 10.5 percent of the territory in the western half of the city.
Brig. Gen. Yahya Rasool told reporters that all of Mosul will soon be liberated from IS.
He says the battles in that last militant hold-out in Mosul have slowed because the area is densely populated areas, with narrow alleys. Rasool says "it is only a matter of time and a very short time" until the battle is won.
The military push to retake Mosul from the Islamic State group started in October. The city's eastern half was declared liberated in January.
Mosul is divided by the Tigris River into its eastern and western part.