According to residents of Mosul, Islamic State militants have been readying for eventual battle with Iraqi forces. Among various preparations, ISIS/Daesh has been digging tunnels and moats, installing oil tanks in residential areas to prevent air strikes, and sealing off neighborhoods.
South of Mosul, army and tribal forces began their operation to recover Shirqat, which they believe is necessary ahead of the attempt on Mosul. Several villages in the area have already been taken back, and Daesh leaders reportedly fled to Hawija with their families. Also, Joint Operations Command spokesman Yahya Rasool said that tribal forces, not Shi’ite militiamen, were in on the maneuvers.
Security forces also launched operations in Jazirat al-Baghdadi and Jazirat Haditha.
At least 65 were killed and 37 were wounded:
In Mosul, militants using welding tools executed six boys. A woman was stoned to death after being accused of fornication. Three young men were whipped for playing soccer. A strike killed a militant leader and several aides. Four militants were killed in another strike.
Clashes in Kazakh left six Peshmerga and eight militants dead.
Militants in Baaj killed four former army personnel and blew up a mosque.
One civilian was killed and 22 were wounded when they came across bombs in al-Mar’i. The five families involved were fleeing Hawija.
A roadside bomb in Bashir killed a Turkmen fighter and wounded three more.
Three policemen were wounded in a roadside bombing in Jurf al-Sakhar.
Security forces killed 22 militants near Barwana.
Peshmerga forces bombed Bashiqa and Tal Keif, killing six militants.
A strike on Qaim killed or wounded 21 militants.