Kurdish Iraqi fighters gear up to enter town of Sinjar from Islamic State militants

Officials with the Iraqi Kurdish militia say they are preparing to push their large-scale military operation into the center of Sinjar, the strategic mountain town in northern Iraq currently in the hands of the Islamic State group.

Nouri Said, the commander of a Yezidi unit of the Kurds' peshmerga forces, says the forces will "remove the barriers along the front line" and move into the town.

Diar Namo, deputy commander of the unit, says they saw more than 50 militants flee the town late Thursday as Kurdish forces ramped up their attack.

Kurdish fighters launched their operation, dubbed Operation Free Sinjar, on Thursday and said they managed to sever one of the Islamic State group's most strategic supply lines.