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At least 8,000 civilians displaced by fighting in west Mosul



The United Nations says some 8,000 people have fled west Mosul since Iraqi forces launched their operations to rid that part of the city from Daesh terrorists.

The UN’s humanitarian aid agency announced on Tuesday that it was increasing its displacement camps to cope with the increase of people who are able to escape.

On February 19, Iraqi soldiers and Hashd al-Sha’abi fighters mounted a new offensive to liberate western Mosul. The city’s eastern side was liberated following three months of operations in January.

“So far today (Tuesday), we have around 300 displaced people — men and women and children,” said Brigadier General Salman Hashem of the Iraqi Counter-Terrorism Service.

“There are more coming. They’re stopped at a checkpoint when they arrive and separated. The men are searched and then checked against a database,” he added.

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Meanwhile, Iraq’s Chief of Mission of the International Organization for Migration (IOM), Thomas Lothar Weiss, has voiced worries over the large number of civilians still remaining in Mosul. “The stories of the survivors are heart-breaking.”

A displaced Iraqi young woman looks towards the camera as she gathers with others to flee the city of Mosul while Iraqi forces battle Daesh terrorists to recapture the west of the city on February 28, 2017. 

“We are very worried about the fate of the tens of thousands of families still trapped inside of West Mosul,” he said.

According to the IOM some 750,000 people still remain in the city, where according to reports conditions are worsening daily.

Mosul fell to Daesh in 2014, when the terror outfit began its campaign of death and destruction in the Arab country.

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