By Mokhles Khoshnaw
IRBIL, Dec 18 (KUNA) -- The rising numbers of Iraqi civilian victims in the campaign of liberating Mosul from the capture of the so-called Islamic State (IS), and the destruction of the infrastructure in Iraq's second largest city, have prompted Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi to review the entire plan.
On Tuesday, Al-Abadi said that Iraqi military commanders would be reviewing the entire plan to liberate the northwestern governorate of Nineveh. Speaking to reporters a day after a flash visit to the governorate, Al-Abadi reaffirmed the review of the plan but he would elaborate on the causes or nature of doing so. "The battle for Mosul (the provincial capital of the Nineveh) has reached a crucial stage and the key assets for it are the fighters themselves," he said.
The campaign which kicked off almost two months ago resulted in the army recapturing of most of the eastern parts of Mosul from IS militants.
Al-Abadi had visited the recently-liberated Hammam Al-Alil town, south of Mosul, where he met military commanders.
Intensive shooting in retaliation of fire inside a city is a failure military tactic, and the plan to liberate the city has to be wholly reviewed, Hesham Al-Hashmi, an Iraqi specialist in IS/Daesh affairs told KUNA.
Al-Hashmi said that the details and the goals of the operation dubbed 'We are coming, Nineveh,' have to be re-identified obviously.
The liberated areas will need to be thoroughly re-examined, in addition to conducting an overall review to protect the forces so as not to push them into unsafe areas, that might need special units (commandos), he said.
Al-Hashmi noted that the high rates of victims and the considerable volume of destruction of the infrastructure, have necessitated the review.
Such review should focus on not allowing Daesh to have safe havens among the displaced and the refugees, destroying tunnels and sniper towers, and supporting the forces with Apaches.
In most cases when the matter is related to residential areas that are full of potential unpleasant surprises and ambushes, the devastation is tremendous, Al-Hashmi said.
He recalled the battle of Ayn al-Arab (Kobani) near the Syrian borders with Turley, which brought huge destruction to the city.
The revision of Mosul plan has to set goals for the coming stage, such as boosting the commandos with elite forces from the police, providing them with the capabilities that could secure victory at last.
After IS was defeated in various districts of Mosul, the militant group targeted these areas with random bombardment killing and wounding 1,200 people.
The Iraqi joint forces, with air support from the army and the international coalition on 17 October launched a campaign to retake Mosul from IS after the group captured in in the summer of 2014. (end) sbr.msa