Iraqi Prime Minister signals operations to drive out Islamic State

A convoy of Iraqi military vehicles heads toward Qayyarah base in northern Iraq, ahead of an expected offensive to retake Mosul from Islamic State militants on Saturday, Oct. 15, 2016. (AP Photo/Adam Schreck)
A convoy of Iraqi military vehicles heads toward Qayyarah base in northern Iraq, ahead of an expected offensive to retake Mosul from Islamic State militants on Saturday, Oct. 15, 2016. (AP Photo/Adam Schreck)

BAGHDAD (AP) -- Iraqi state television says Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi has announced the start of operations to liberate the northern city of Mosul from Islamic State militants.

State TV showed a brief written statement in the early hours Monday announcing the start of the widely anticipated military offensive to drive IS out of Iraq's second largest city.

The push to retake Mosul will be the biggest military operation in Iraq since American troops left in 2011 and, if successful, the strongest blow yet to the Islamic State. 

 

Copyright 2016. The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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