IS leader Baghdadi in audio message says no Mosul retreat

An Iraqi tank advances towards the village of Abu Shuwayhah, south of Mosul during the ongoing operation to retake the last major Islamic State (IS) group strongholdJihadist leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi called on his fighters to resist as Iraqi forces were poised to enter the city of Mosul where he declared a “caliphate” two years ago. “Do not retreat,” said a voice presented as belonging to the leader of the Islamic State group in an audio message released early Thursday by the IS-affiliated Al-Furqan media. “To all the people of Nineveh, especially the fighters, beware of any weakness in facing your enemy,” Baghdadi said, referring to the northern Iraqi province of which Mosul is the capital.

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