Reuters: Iraqi forces besiege Islamic State around Mosul Old City
Iraqi government forces besieged Islamic State militants around Mosul's Old City on Thursday, edging closer to the historic mosque from where the group's leader declared a caliphate nearly three years ago.
The militants, holed up in houses and darting through alleyways, resisted with sniper fire, suicide attacks and car bombs.
Though heavy rain hampered the advance, Federal Police and rapid response unit troops reached points about 500 m (yards) from the centuries-old al-Nuri Mosque by Thursday morning.
The black jihadist flag was clearly visible draped from its famous leaning minaret.
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