The bridges had already been damaged in airstrikes by the US-led coalition in recent weeks. In previous instances of ISIS
taking out bridges ahead of Iraqi troop advances, including in the cases of military operations in Qayyara and Anbar
, Iraqi forces built temporary or floating bridges, causing troops to slow down but not to stop.
On Friday, Iraqi Counter-Terrorism
Forces announced troops had reached Mosul’s “Second Bridge,” located on the east bank of the Tigris River, according to Iraq’s Joint Operations Command. This follows a milestone earlier this week when Iraqi Counter-Terrorism
forces reached the east bank of the Tigris River in Mosul
for the first time since the kick-off of the large scale military operation to reclaim the city started on October 17, 2016.
Forces have also cleared key government complexes as of Friday, including the new government complex in eastern Mosul
as well as several Mosul
University buildings in eastern Mosul
— which had at one time been a headquarters and killing ground for ISIS
The Tigris River divides eastern and western Mosul. Iraqi-led forces have not crossed into or started any anti-ISIS
operations in western Mosul