Iraq says it's launched offensive to recapture IS-held Mosul

FILE - In this Tuesday, July 8, 2014 file photo, an Iraqi refugee man who left his hometown of Mosul walks towards Irbil as he crosses a berm that separates Kurdish fighters and militants of the Islamic State group outside the northern city of Mosul, Iraq. An Iraqi military spokesman says the long-awaited military operation to recapture the northern city of Mosul from Islamic State militants "has begun." The spokesman for the Joint Military Command, Brig. Gen. Yahya Rasool, says Iraqi forces retook several villages on the outskirts of the town of Makhmour, east of Mosul, on Thursday, March 24, 2016. (AP Photo, File)BAGHDAD (AP) — The Iraqi military backed by U.S.-led coalition aircraft on Thursday launched a long-awaited operation to recapture the northern city of Mosul from Islamic State militants, a military spokesman said.

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