Mosul offensive: Iraqi army launches ‘final push’ as army attacks ISIS from north-west

Iraqi forces opened up a new front in the battle to retake the Isil-held city of Mosul on Thursday, with the offensive gaining fresh momentum after a stagnant few weeks.

The army is moving in from the north, trying to meet up with the elite Counter-Terrorism Service (CTS) and Federal Police troops who are painstakingly advancing from the south.

Hundreds of thousands of hungry and desperate civilians remain trapped in Mosul’s Old City, where roughly 1,000 Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (Isil) militants are holding onto a cluster of densely-populated neighborhoods.