The Prime Minister of Iraq announced the beginning of the campaign to liberate Western Mosul
The main objective is the liberation of civilians, said al-Abadi.
KUWAIT city, UN, 19 Feb. /Offset. TASS Pavel Prokofiev, Oleg Zelenin/. The Prime Minister of Iraq Haidar al-Abadi announced the start of the campaign for the liberation of Western Mosul from the terrorist group “Islamic state” (IG, is prohibited in Russia). This was reported by his office.
“Commander of the armed forces, the Prime Minister of Iraq Haidar al-Abadi announced the beginning of the liberation operations in the West Bank of Mosul”, — stated in the text. Our primary objective is to rescue people from the hands of Islamic state terrorists, said al-Abadi.
As reported in Saturday office for the coordination of humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), fighting city can leave to 400 thousand. UN Humanitarian agencies prepare for the impact of the storm the Western part of the Iraqi city of Mosul, controlled by the terrorist group “Islamic state”, including a possible mass Exodus of civilians.
“Humanitarian agencies are hurriedly preparing for the humanitarian consequences of the military campaign. South of Mosul, built refugee centers, as well as procurement of essential goods. The stock is designed for 250-400 thousand people who can leave the city”, — stated in the information Bulletin OCHA, distributed in Baghdad.
According to the coordinator of the UN humanitarian assistance in Iraq Lise Grande, the world organization needs to be prepared for any eventuality. “We don’t know what will happen in the course of the military campaign, but we have to be ready for anything. Tens of thousands of people may be forced to leave the city. Hundreds of thousands of civilians can be blocked for weeks or even months,” said Grande.
In her words, “the highest priority” should be the protection of the civilian population. “There is nothing more important,” she said.
The humanitarian situation is deteriorating
According to UN estimates, in the Western part of Mosul can be up to 800 thousand civilians. After three months ago had blocked the highway to Syria, in these areas are practically not transported commercial goods and not received humanitarian assistance. Sources in Western areas of the city reported to the UN that almost half of grocery stores in Western Mosul closed, the bakery can’t buy the flour because of the high prices. “The prices of kerosene and gas has jumped so much that families have to burn wood, furniture, plastic or even garbage to cook or keep warm,” said the OCHA.
“The situation is alarming, noted Grande. The battle hasn’t even started yet and we are already witnessing a humanitarian crisis”. In turn, in the Children’s UN Fund (UNICEF) reported that in Western Mosul there is an acute shortage of clean water and more than half of its residents are forced to use wells. As a result, increases the danger of the spread of infectious diseases transmitted through water, including cholera.
About the full liberation of Eastern Mosul from ISIS, it was announced on January 24.