Daesh downs Iraqi chopper over Mosul, pilots dead: Army

Press TV – The Iraqi military says the terrorist ِDaesh group has shot down one of its helicopters over the northern city of Mosul, killing two pilots on board.

In a statement released on Thursday, Iraq’s Joint Operations Command said the helicopter “was attacked by enemy fire and destroyed on the battlefield.”

However, it was not specified whether the helicopter was hit by gunfire or a surface-to-air missile.

The aircraft was providing air support to Iraqi Federal Police forces fighting Daesh on the ground, the statement added.

The Daesh-affiliated Amaq news agency reported that the helicopter had crashed in al-Ghabat area, east of the Tigris River.

This screen grab for footage published by AP shows a helicopter shot down over Mosul, Iraq, April 6, 2017.

Furthermore, footage from an AP cameraman showed the chopper in a large ball of fire and a long trail of black smoke falling out of the sky.

It is the first aircraft downed by Daesh over Mosul since the start of the operation to liberate the city last October.

Mosul fell to Daesh in 2014, when the terror outfit began its campaign of death and destruction in the Arab country.

Iraqi army soldiers and allied fighters launched the offensive to retake Mosul, Daesh’s last major city stronghold in the country, in October 2016.

Iraqi forces took control of eastern Mosul in January and launched the battle in the west in February.