April 29 (UPI) -- A U.S. soldier was killed Saturday following an explosion near Mosul, Iraq, according to a statement from the U.S.-led military coalition.
About 500 U.S. soldiers are part of a 100,000-person force Iraqi fighters seeking to retake control of the nation's second-largest city, which fell under control of the Islamic State in 2014.
U.S. forces are not directly involved in the ground assault, but are helping with logistical support for Iraqi troops.
The military campaign, which includes Iraqi security forces, Kurdish Peshmerga fighters and an array of Sunni militias, has made slow but steady progress liberating Mosul from Islamic State control. The government in February said it had regained control of the eastern half of Mosul and over the last few weeks has steadily pushed Islamic State fighters from several neighborhoods west of the Tigris River, which bisects the city.