Inside Story/Al Jazeera: Is the Iraqi army ready to liberate Mosul?
Iraq's prime minister says government forces and their allies will retake control of Mosul by the end of the year.
It has been an effective summer for Iraqi forces battling the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS) group.
Now they are fighting to retake Iraq's second biggest city, Mosul, which has been under ISIL control for more than two years.
The Iraqi army, Kurdish forces, Shia militias and the US air force are all converging on the city from different directions.
Iraqi soldiers re-took Qayara on Saturday. It is an oil-producing town about 70km south of Mosul and near a major airbase.
The Iraqi army had been fighting for control of Qayara for several weeks.
Now, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi says Mosul will be captured by the end of the year.
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WNU Editor: The Iraq government is not ready .... and will not be ready for the foreseeable future. This analysis also says the same thing .... Recapturing Mosul from Islamic State will not be easy (UPI).