ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan24) – Over 90 percent of internally displaced persons (IDPs) of eastern Mosul have returned home while the military operation to liberate west Mosul continue, Iraqi Minister of Migration and Displacement stated on Friday.
“The number of displaced people from western Mosul has reached 526,233 since the start of the attack on this side in Feb. 2017," the minister of migration and displacement Jassim Mohammed al-Jaff said in a statement.
Al-Jaff mentioned that the IDPs had been settled in different camps located in the south, east, and west of Mosul.
The Minister stated that out of a total number of eastern Mosul IDPs which is estimated to be about 176,000, more than 90 percent of them have returned to their homes.
The Iraqi forces retook eastern Mosul in the second half of Jan. 2017, the area remains mostly destroyed and out of basic services.
According to the Iraqi official, centers have been established to track the number of returnees to the liberated areas.
The United Nations in a statement on Thursday noted that they expect 200,000 more people to be displaced in west Mosul as the battle continues against the Islamic State (IS).
“As military operations intensify and move closer to Mosul’s Old City area, we expect that up to 200,000 more people will flee,” Lise Grande, the UN’s Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq stated.
The number of Mosul IDPs has reached 670,000 since the military operation begun in Oct. 2016 to retake Mosul from the jihadist group, according to the federal government of Iraq.
Editing by Ava Homa