Daesh Militant Blows Up Tank Truck in Eastern Mosul, Kills 24

West of Mosul, one Iraqi official said IS militants breached the defenses of Shiite militiamen at a village outside the northern Iraqi town of Tal Afar, which is west of Mosul. "Daesh attacked at dawn to try to control the village Tal Zalat", said Karim Nouri.

Sources close to Al Arabiya reported the deaths of dozens of civilians at the hand of an ISIS booby-trapped tanker that exploded on Saturday, in the newly-liberated Qadisiyah neighborhood east of Mosul.

Both officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to brief the media.

In Baghdad, a vehicle bomb blew up in a crowded market in the center of the city on Saturday, killing seven people and wounding 15, police and medical sources said.

In an attempt to slow Iraqi forces' Mosul mission, terrorists have mounted a series of counterattacks and suicide bombings in different parts of the country. Rather than just pushing forward, his men are often forced to pause to deal with humanitarian issues, he said.

"You can't just liberate land, you need to also take care of the people", Yarellah said. The Iraqi counter-terrorism forces say that ISIS' most lethal weapon is their snipers.

At the front line just south of the airport, the Iraqi army Sgt. Maj.

The stakes are high for the Iraqi government and its USA backers as they orchestrate a massive, multipronged attack on a large, densely populated city that has been under extremist control for 2 1/2 years.

A spokesman for the militias said those attacks had been repelled.

A source in the Counter Terrorism Services, which are spearheading the army offensive, said Islamic State exploited the bad weather and cloud cover, which prevented air support from a US -led global coalition.

The number of Iraqi military deaths for the battle for Mosul, now nearing the end of its seventh week, emerged yesterday with United Nations officials describing additional hundreds of further civilian casualties, reporting that 926 non-combatants had been killed. The Peshmerga is reporting that they lost a large chunk of fighters by themselves, with 1,600 killed and some 10,000 wounded since late October.