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With the full liberation of Mosul in sight, Iraqis celebrated on Sunday. Troops tied white banners and Iraqi flags to lamp posts and damaged buildings including the Hadba minaret, which ISIL jihadists blew up in June along with the adjoining Grand al-Nuri Mosque, as air strikes and mortars rained down nearby. It was from al-Nuri’s pulpit that the so-called Islamic State group’s leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi declared his caliphate three years ago.

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