Baghdad (IraqiNews.com) Doctors Without Borders said Wednesday it had treated more than 100 civilians in the western side of the city of Mosul within two weeks that followed the opening of its hospital there.
The organization said cases handled by the hospital, which officially opened on June 23rd, included “more than 25 children and 20 women”, adding that those fell victims to airstrikes, bombardments, gunshots and suicide attacks.
“Every day, our teams are treating patients from the Old City, many of whom are women and children,” says Stephanie Remion, MSF emergency coordinator for West Mosul.
“Despite the tremendous efforts undertaken by staff in front line trauma stabilisation points and by ambulance drivers, the numbers of patients we are receiving are comparatively low relative to the unknown thousands of residents thought to be trapped in the conflict zone. Our greatest fear is that many of the most urgent cases are dying on the battlefield, unable to access life-saving medical assistance.”
At least 900.000 civilians have been displaced since Iraqi government forces, backed by a U.S.-led coalition, launched an offensive in October to retake Mosul, the Islamic State’s biggest stronghold in Iraq, according to Iraqi government and United Nations counts.
U.N. agencies, government authorities and aid groups have regularly recounted living difficulties for hundreds of thousands of civilians in refugee camps as well as hundreds of thousands others trapped in the battle field.
Iraqi forces are currently fighting less than 300 IS fighters in the Old City in western Mosul, and generals are predicting the city to be fully recaptured within a few days.