Mosul (IraqiNews.com) A mass grave composed of relics of fifty persons, with parts of their bodies missing, was found in west of Mosul, an Iraqi army official was quoted saying on Friday.
“Troops of the army’s 16 division seized a mass grave while combing the group’s last holdout in Aiyadhiya in northwest of Mosul in search for IS war remnants,” Lt. Shaker Ghalib told BasNews.
“The mass grave included 50 relics that seemed to be for civilians with signs of torture and bullets in the head. Most of the body parts of them were missing,” he added.
“Military troops began transferring the relics to forensic medicine department in Mosul in order to be identified by their relatives,” Ghalib said.
Several mass graves were found in areas that were controlled by Islamic State since the Iraqi government, backed by a U.S.-led military coalition, launched a major security offensive in October 2016 to recapture the city of Mosul, Islamic State’s largest stronghold in Iraq.
Iraqi PM Haidar al-Abadi announced in a televised speech on August 20 the beginning of operations to recapture Tal Afar, which has been held by the militants since 2014, when the extremist group first emerged to proclaim its self-styled ‘caliphate’. This came after 40 days of declaring victory in Mosul, the group’s former capital, where operations lasted between October to July.
Joint troops then recaptured Aiyadhiya, located 11 KM away from Tal Afar, after invading it on August 29.