Anbar (IraqiNews.com) More than 4,000 families are besieged by Islamic State in western Anbar to be used as human shields, a member of the provincial council said on Tuesday.
“More than 4,000 families, most of whom are elderly, women and children, are besieged by IS members in Qaim town, located on borders with Syria. They are denied access out of their houses,” Hamid al-Dulaimi told BasNews.
“Tens of civilians were shot dead, beheaded and burnt to death in Qaim over spying for Iraqi troops or collaboration with tribal fighters,” Dulaimi added.
According to Dulaimi, “the liberation offensives at the western regions are so late as the battle in Mosul was ongoing. However, military troops had not moved yet to the upstream regions of Euphrates River.”
A military source was quoted earlier this week as saying that Lt.Gen Abdul-Amir Yarallah, commander of the Nineveh Operation, ordered to besiege IS havens in western Anbar preparing to invade them.
Iraqi fighter jets reportedly dropped last week millions of leaflets informing locals that liberation offensives for the province were nearing.
Iraqi troops were able to return life back to normal in the biggest cities of Anbar including Fallujah, Ramadi and others after recapturing them. However, Anbar’s western towns of Annah, Qaim and Rawa are still held by the extremist group since 2014, when it emerged to proclaim a self-styled Islamic Caliphate.