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Iraqi troops train at a camp in Bardarash district, 30 kilometres northeast of Mosul on January 10th, in preparation for an assault to recapture the city. [Safin Hamed/AFP]

Iraqi forces make gains near Mosul amid ISIL defections

Joint Iraqi army and Kurdish forces are closing in on Mosul as 'Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant' elements, including 'Sinjar wali', defect nearby, officials say.

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