IHCHR: Islamic State holding 10.000 people in last bastion in Anbar

An Iraqi border sign in Anbar.

Baghdada ( Islamic State militants are holding 10.000 civilians at their very last holdout in Iraq: Anbar’s western town of Rawa, Iraq’s human rights body said Wednesday.

The Iraqi High Commission for Human Rights expressed its “concern for the fate of innocents besieged inside Rawa”, adding that “according to the detecting sources at the commission’s offices in Anbar, Daesh (Islamic State( terrorists are still holding nearly 2500 families (10.000 individuals) to use them as human shields and hamper the advance of Iraqi forces”.

The commission said IS members have prevented civilians from reaching safe routes created by Iraqi security forces for their evacuation.

It also urged to hasten with operations to liberate the town and to secure humanitarian needs from local and world relief organizations.

Operations were launched, late October, to liberate Qaim and Rawa towns. Both have been held by the extremist group since 2014, when it occupied one third of Iraq to proclaim a self-styled Islamic “Caliphate”.

Iraqi forces have managed, so far, to retake Mosul, the group’s former capital, the town of Tal Afar, west of Nineveh, Kirkuk’s town of Hawija and Anbar’s Annah and Qaim, leaving only Rawa in militants’ grip.


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