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FILE PICTURE: U.S. Army General Joseph Votel, commander, U.S. Central Command, briefs the media at the Pentagon in Washington, U.S. April 29, 2016 about the investigation of the airstrike on the Doctors Without Borders trauma center in Kunduz, Afghanistan on October 3, 2015. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. military said on Wednesday that 284 members of the Iraqi security forces had been killed since the battle to retake western Mosul began, with more than 1,600 wounded.

Army General Joseph Votel said during a congressional hearing that in addition to the casualties in western Mosul, the battle for eastern Mosul had lead to 490 members of the Iraqi security forces being killed with over 3,000 wounded.

Votel is head of the U.S. military's Central Command.

Iraqi special forces and police fought Islamic State militants to edge closer to the al-Nuri mosque in western Mosul on Wednesday, tightening their control around the landmark site in the battle to recapture Iraq's second city.

(Reporting by Idrees Ali; Editing by Alistair Bell)

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