News Briefs – May 17, 2017

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Convicted transgender soldier will stay on active duty

The Army says that when transgender solider Chelsea Manning is released from military prison May 17 she will remain on active duty in a special status, pending her final appellate review.
An Army spokeswoman, Lt. Col. Jennifer Johnson, said Manning will be released in accordance with former President Barack Obama's decision to grant her clemency.
Manning was convicted in 2013 of leaking secret military and State Department documents and battlefield video. She served nearly seven years of her 35-year sentence at the military prison in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. She was known as Bradley Manning before transitioning in prison. She is appealing her court-martial conviction.
Johnson said Manning will be on unpaid active duty in “excess leave” status, which makes her eligible for medical care at Army treatment facilities. AP
 

Iraq says IS now in control of about a tenth of Mosul’s west

A Baghdad military spokesman says Iraqi forces have surrounded Islamic State militants in Mosul’s Old City, leaving the extremists in control of only about 10.5 percent of the territory in the western half of the city.
Brig. Gen. Yahya Rasool told reporters that all of Mosul will soon be liberated from IS.
He says the battles in that last militant hold-out in Mosul have slowed because the area is densely populated areas, with narrow alleys. Rasool says “it is only a matter of time and a very short time” until the battle is won.
The military push to retake Mosul from the Islamic State group started in October. The city’s eastern half was declared liberated in January.
Mosul is divided by the Tigris River into its eastern and western part. AP