In 2014, forces of the Islamic State group ISIL, also known as ISIS, overran the largest city in northern Iraq, Mosul - shocking the world with the speed and the ferocity of their victory.

"The Islamic State that we saw sweep into northern Iraq ... was really an army. This was not an insurgent force, it wasn't terrorist cells, this was really a conventional army that had enormous experience from the Syrian battlefields," said General David Petraeus, former commander of the multinational force.

It was in Mosul that ISIL announced the formation of his 'caliphate'. 

Today, the city is an active combat zone, as Iraqi forces fight to take the city back, street by street, in fierce urban warfare.

101 East travels to the front line, recording the experiences of the soldiers fighting to liberate their home towns, and the civilians caught in the crossfire.

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Source: Al Jazeera News