• Iraq's elite counterterrorism forces advance near Mosul, Iraq, Thursday, Oct. 20, 2016. Iraqi special forces charged into the Mosul battle Thursday with a pre-dawn advance on a nearby town held by the Islamic State group, a key part of a multi-pronged assault on eastern approaches to the besieged city. (AP Photo/Khalid Mohammed)

    World diplomats seek post-battle plan for IS bastion Mosul

    PARIS (AP) — Iraq’s prime minister vowed Thursday to protect civilians fleeing the battle to oust Islamic State extremists from Mosul, as the offensive picked up speed and diplomats worked to ensure the gains are lasting — and that jihadists don’t escape.