US-backed Iraqi forces have launched a new push toward the old city of Mosul held by so-called Islamic State, on the western bank of the Tigris river, an Iraqi military spokesman said.

Iraqi forces are fighting their way toward the old centre of the city, advancing from the south and the southwest, Brigadier-General Yahya Rasool, spokesman for the joint operations command, told state-run television.

Iraqi forces captured the eastern side of Mosul in January after 100 days of fighting and launched their attack on thedistricts that lie west of the Tigris river on 19 February.
Their advance in western Mosul paused over the past 48 hours because of bad weather.  

Defeating Islamic State in Mosul would crush the Iraqi wing of the caliphate declared by the group's leader, Abu Bakral-Baghdadi, in 2014, over parts of Iraq and Syria.