Mosul : Iraqi troops faced stiff resistance on Saturday from Islamic State militants as they pushed deeper into eastern Mosul, backed by aerial support from the US-led international coalition, a senior military commander said, reports AP.

At dawn, troops moved into the Muharabeen and Ulama neighborhoods after fully liberating the adjacent Tahrir neighbourhood on Friday, said Maj Gen Sami al-Aridi of the Iraqi special forces. Al-Aridi said IS militants were fighting back with snipers, rocket-propelled grenades and mortar rounds.

Thick black columns of smoke were seen billowing from the two areas, while dozens of civilians were seen fleeing to government-controlled areas. Shortly before noon, a suicide bomber emerged from a house in the Tahrir neighborhood and attacked security forces, wounding four troops.

Another suicide car bomber hit the troops in Aden neighborhood afternoon, killing a soldier and wounding three others.

Late on Friday, a group of IS militants attacked the village of Imam Gharbi south of Mosul, controlling most of it for hours before airstrikes from the US-led international coalition were called in, an officer said.

The clashes and multiple suicide bombings left three policemen dead, including an officer, and four others wounded, he said.

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