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Christian Iraqi Army special soldiers flash a victory sign in the formerly Islamic State-held town of Bartila, some 27km east of Mosul.
Christian Iraqi Army special soldiers flash a victory sign in the formerly Islamic State-held town of Bartila, some 27km east of Mosul. AMEL PAIN

Pressure mounts on IS in Mosul

IRAQ's second largest city and Islamic State's last major stronghold in Iraq is under pressure with Iraqi forces within 5km of Mosul.

Acting regional Defence Minister Karim Sinjari said it would not be a quick victory: "The roads are very thin. You can't have vehicles. So it will be a fight, person by person.”

He expected the 4000-8000 militants would put up a fierce fight because of Mosul's symbolism for the Sunni jihadis - IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi declared a caliphate and himself the leader of the world's Muslims in Mosul after seizing the city in 2014.



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