Network Correspondents Face Gunfire Outside Mosul

By Mark Joyella 

CNN correspondent Nick Paton Walsh jumped out of frame as heavy gunfire broke out during a report from Iraq Monday morning. Paton Walsh and crew are traveling with a caravan of Peshmerga fighters taking part in efforts to wrest control of Mosul from ISIS.

“One came right at me,” Paton Walsh said of the shots as the CNN crew, like the fighters, took shelter behind vehicles along the roadway. CNN is the first western media outlet to travel along the road into Mosul since the start of the offensive last night.

CBS News foreign correspondent Holly Williams, too, was forced to take cover during a report from Iraq Friday morning.

Williams was with Iraqi and Kurdish fighters just after dawn when they broke through the front lines with a column of tanks and armored vehicles, reaching an area that has been under ISIS control for two years.

For ISIS, “Mosul is really the jewel in the crown of its so-called Islamic State, and nobody here is expecting this fight to be quick or easy,” Williams said on CBS This Morning, before dropping to the ground for safety as the sound of gunfire could be heard.

Williams says it’s believed between 3,000 and 5,000 ISIS fighters are inside Mosul prepared to defend the city.