The Iraqi Popular Mobilization Units claim that they have cut off the main highway, connecting the Iraqi city of Mosul and the Syrian city of Raqqa. However, there are no highways between these two cities.
The main highway, connecting the Iraqi city of Mosul and the Syrian city of Raqqa, has been taken under control of the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Units (PMU), also known as the Hashd al-Shaabi forces, spokesman for the PMU, Jaafar al-Husseini, announced on Wednesday. He also noted that in this way, the popular forces have cut off the main supply route of terrorists.
It is already the fourth day, when the Hashd al-Shaabi forces successfully advance their attack to the south-west of Mosul. The popular forces intend to completely block the city in the medium term. On Wednesday, at least 8 small settlements were taken under control of the PMU that came close to the village of Mahalabia.
The offensive is ongoing, but, apparently, the command of the Iraqi militia urgently needed to announce some ‘major victory’, such as blocking of the highway from Mosul to Aleppo, which allegedly leads to the capital of terrorists in Syria, the city of Raqqa.
The statement is another ‘soap bubble’ that the Iraqi government and military like to distend so much. One of the roads, leading to Mosul, was really cut off by the Hashd al-Shaabi forces, but roads from Mosul to Raqqa or from Mosul to Aleppo just do not exist. They can talk only about blocking of a highway from Mosul to Mahalabia or to Tel-Abta. But there are no asphalt roads, leading to the Syrian border, behind these villages.
Terrorists of the Islamic State (IS) group long ago supply Mosul, using minor roads, running through the desert to the Syrian-Iraqi Abu Kamal border-crossing point, and then to Deir ez-Zor and Raqqa. In other words, it is just impossible to come to Raqqa from Mosul, using some highway. There are no highways between these cities.
The statement of the Hashd al-Shaabi forces, made on Wednesday, seems strange because the offensive itself is successful. It is not clear for what reason they turn the ordinary episode into some media ‘elephant’. We can explain this only by special passion of Iraqi military for ostentation that has repeatedly misinformed media during the war against the IS.
Meanwhile, it was also reported that a house-to-house terrorist clearance operation is being carried out by the Iraqi Special Forces in the newly-recaptured neighborhood of Gogjali in eastern Mosul. Reportedly, eight IS terrorists have been already killed during the operation. The Iraqi forces also announced that they managed to shoot down a drone of the IS group during their operations in Gogjali.
Earlier, the Iraqi Federal Police and the Popular Mobilization Units reported that they had recaptured seven villages in western Mosul.