Daesh blows up Mosul’s biggest hotel

– As the Mosul operation enters its sixth day, more than 30 villages have been retaken from Daesh control
– Daesh terrorists have detonated a five-star hotel in Iraq’s northern city of Mosul amid an ongoing operation to retake the Daesh-held city, according to Anadolu Agency.

Speaking to Anadolu Agency on Saturday, Iraqi officer Saadi al-Shemari said the militants had planted TNT-type bombs inside the Ninova International Hotel in northern Mosul and blown it up.

“The 11-storey luxurious hotel has been badly damaged,” he said.

Located on the banks of the Degla River, the 236-room hotel is considered the biggest in Mosul.

Last week, the Iraqi army, backed by U.S.-led coalition airstrikes, launched a much-anticipated offensive to retake Mosul.

Daesh has lost more than 30 villages since the offensive started, as the Iraqi army and its allies advance on the city along multiple axes.

Daesh captured Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city, in mid-2014 before overrunning large swathes of territory in the country’s northern and western regions.

Recent months have seen the Iraqi army, backed by local allies on the ground and a U.S.-led air coalition, retake much territory. Nevertheless, the terrorist group remains in control of several parts of the country, including Mosul.