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Iraqi forces are engaged in a major military operation to retake Mosul from jihadists

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Iraqi forces retook a key town from the Islamic State group Monday, a crucial objective on the southern front of the offensive to wrest back the city of Mosul.

Federal police, army and elite interior ministry forces established full control over Hamam al-Alil, the last town of note on the way to Mosul from the south, AFP reporters said.

It lies on the west bank of the Tigris river, about 15 kilometres (nine miles) southeast of Mosul.

Iraqi forces have already entered Mosul from the east and were moving close to the city limits from the north on Monday but have some distance to cover on the southern front.

Life quickly resumed in Hamam al-Alil, an AFP cameraman reported, with some residents re-opening shops and other bathing in the town’s sulphur springs.

Soldiers could be seen helping some displaced civilians with their bags.

The recapture of the town clears the way for Iraqi forces to push further north and move to within striking distance of the southern neighbourhoods of Mosul.

Mosul’s southern approach is home to the international airport, a vast military area and a large base that Iraqi forces were forced to flee with IS took over the city in June 2014.

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24 Hours Across Africa

Tottenham appoint Mourinho as New Coach

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Tottenham Hotspur had experienced a woeful start in their domestic league, the club board of directors has terminated Mauricio Pochettino four years deal.

Jose Mourinho signed a three-year contract until the end of the 2022/23 season.

Tottenham sit 14th in England’s top flight after picking up just three wins from their opening 12 games and were eliminated from the League Cup in September by fourth-tier Colchester United.

Speaking on his appointment, Mourinho said: “I am excited to be joining a club with such a great heritage and such passionate supporters. The quality in both the squad and the academy excites me. Working with these players is what has attracted me.”

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24 Hours Across Africa

Brazil win U17 World cup after beating Mexico

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Brazil bags another remarkable win to tally its Under-17 World Cup trophy by beating Mexico.

The host team, Brazil leaves it late to triumphed a 2-1 win at the Bezerrao stadium.

thanks to Lazaro Vinicius Marques’ 93rd-minute goal to made the difference.

Mexico – winners of the showpiece tournament in 2005 and 2011 – looked on track to add a third title to their collection when Bryan Alonso Gonzalez Olivan headed home the opener in the 66th minute.

But Brazil, playing in front of legends Ronaldo and Cafu, rallied courtesy of Kaio Jorge’s questionable penalty with six minutes of regulation time remaining.

Brazil then completed the comeback deep into stoppage time when Lazaro volleyed home a last-gasp winner.

The victory added to Brazil’s successes in 1997, 1999 and 2003 as they moved within one of Nigeria’s record of five championships.

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