Middle East UN: 435,000 civilians displaced since West Mosul operation begun

UN: 435,000 civilians displaced since West Mosul operation begun
People who fled the Islamic State stronghold of Mosul stand in line to receive food at a refugee camp, Iraq, Dec. 18, 2016. (Photo: Ammar Awad / Reuters)

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan24) – The United Nations stated on Tuesday that 435,000 civilians had been displaced since the launch of the second Mosul military offensive on Feb. 19, 2017.

“Over 403,000 are currently displaced from western Mosul city, while some 31,000 people have been able to return to retaken parts of the city,” Stephane Dujarric, spokesperson for the UN Secretary-General said at the daily news briefing.

He also mentioned that people remaining under the control of the Islamic State (IS) in west Mosul are facing a critical shortage of almost all commodities, as commercial lines of supplies to these territories have been cut since Nov. 2016.

“Some cases of acute malnutrition are now being seen in infants arriving with their families from western Mosul,” Dujarric continued. “Families who remain in the retaken parts of west Mosul and those who have returned to these areas also rely on humanitarian assistance, as basic public services and market activity have yet to be restored.”

Mosul is one of the strongholds of the extremist group occupied in June 2014.

Iraqi forces launched the west Mosul operation in late February, a month after liberating the eastern part of the city. The military operation is ongoing, and security forces continue to advance in the area.


Editing by G.H. Renaud