World Bulletin / News Desk
Police Captain Hamam Abd al-Halili said that clashes had erupted after army troops tried to retake Mosul’s Tahrir district from ISIL.
"Seven soldiers have been killed within the last 24 hours -- including an army captain -- and another five injured," al-Halili said.
At least 31 ISIL militants were killed in the fighting over the same period, he added.
Al-Halili went on to note that two Iraqi army vehicles and four ISIL vehicles had been destroyed in the clashes.
"Security forces are currently sweeping captured areas for landmines and booby-traps," he said.
On Oct. 17, the Iraqi army -- backed by U.S.-led coalition airstrikes and local allies on the ground -- began a wide-ranging operation to retake Mosul, ISIL’s last stronghold in northern Iraq.
Once Iraq’s second largest city in terms of population, Mosul was overrun by the extremist group -- along with areas of northern and western Iraq -- in mid-2014.
Recent months have seen the Iraqi army and its allies retake much territory, especially on Mosul’s outskirts and in Iraq’s western Anbar province.