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Editorial Note: The following news reports are summaries from original sources. They may also include corrections of Arabic names and political terminology. Comments are in parentheses.

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Mosul Residents Flee on Mass Due to Intensified US-Iraqi Government Attacks, With 47% of Casualties Are Civilians

January 16, 2017 

Editor's Note:

The coalition which fights the Islamic State and other Sunni groups in Syria consists of US-led NATO forces, Russian forces, Syrian Alewite government forces, Iranian-backed Shi'i militias, and Kurdish peshmerga forces. The coalition's continuous attacks have resulted in the killing of thousands of Iraqi and Syrian Sunni Muslim Arabs and the eviction of millions of them as a result of the destruction of their cities and villages.

The end outcome is going to be the weakening and possible dismantling of Iraqi and Syrian states as well as the eviction (ethnic cleansing of) Sunni Muslim Arabs, particularly from the upper Euphrates region of northwestern Iraq and northeastern Syria. 

The larger context for understanding the Syrian war (and other wars in the Middle East) is that it contributes to the implementation of the Zionist-Israeli plan of destroying the Arab Middle Eastern states in preparation for the establishment of the greater Israeli empire, from the Nile of Egypt to the Euphrates of Iraq.  

For a background, read: 

Zionist Creative Destruction of the Middle East for the Benefit of the Apartheid Israeli Regime

 

A cemetery for people who were killed in the clashes is seen at a grave in a schoolyard east of Mosul, Iraq, January 11, 2017 Displaced Iraqi children wait for food trucks at a newly constructed United Nations refugee camp, January 2017
   
   
   

yaqein.net photos 

4,000 Mosul residents leave the City in one day, fleeing the intensified bombardment by Iraqi government forces and air strikes by the US-Led coalition, on January 15, 2017

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http://yaqein.net/AR/details8927.htm

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The following are news stories from a pro-Iraqi government website (http://www.iraqinews.com/) :

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4,000 refugees left Mosul in 24 hours: aid group

by Mohamed Mostafa Jan 15, 2017, 5:07 pm

Baghdad (IraqiNews.com)

Four-thousand Iraqi refugees have migrated from Mosul as Iraqi groups become close to clearing half of the city from Islamic State militants, an aid group said.

Eyad Rafed, a member of the Iraqi Red Crescent Society, said those had fled areas at the northeast and southeast to locations held by Iraqi government forces, and were relocated to refugee camps in the east and south of the city after coordinating with relief teams.

The humanitarian situation in refugee camps is getting more difficult, especially with increases in refugees coming from areas that are witnessing military operations in the eastern side of Mosul, he said in press statements.

Abu Bakr Kanaan, who heads a committee handling refugees returning to Mosul, was quoted by Anadolu Agency as saying that more than 20.000 families have so far been returned to liberated areas in Mosul.

Battles launched in October 2016 to retake Mosul from Islamic State militants who took over the city in 2014, and the Iraqi migration ministry said on Friday that the battled had forced 178.000 people to flee homes there since then.

Dozens of civilians have been reported dead as IS militants targeted them upon trying to escape group-held areas in Mosul.

The United Nations had predicted at least one million people to be displaced as a result of battles between the U.S.-backed government forces and militants, warning of a humanitarian crisis amid a lack of heating appliances at the camps that can help refugees cope with freezing temperatures.

UN: Civilians account for 47% of casualties of Mosul operations

by Mohamed Mostafa Jan 12, 2017, 9:08 am

Baghdad (IraqiNews.com)

Civilians represent 47 percent of casualties resulting from Iraqi security forces battles to recapture the city of Mosul from Islamic State extremists, the United Nations said late Wednesday as Iraqi forces struggle to clear the eastern area of the city from militants.

You would expect in a conflict like this that the number of civilian casualties would be around 15 per cent, a high of 20 per cent. What were seeing in Mosul is that nearly 50 per cent of all casualties are in fact civilians, said Lise Grande, UN Humanitarian Coordinator in Iraq, told UN reporters. Its clear that this is because of direct targeting by combatants. Theyre being targeted by ISIL. Theyre being shot as they try and leave the city and theyre being shot as they try and secure food and other resources, she explained. The number of Iraqis stranded in Islamic State-held areas in western Mosul stands at 750.000, Some 400,000 are now free of control by the IS, Grande said.

She, however, praised the Iraqi forces for taking the humanitarian aspect into consideration during the battles.

One of the exceptional aspects of the Mosul military operation was the decision by the Iraqi security forces to adopt a humanitarian concept of operations when they were developing their battle plans, said Ms. Grande.

Iraqi security forces have recently reached the eastern bank of the Tigris River and are believed to control at least 70 percent of the eastern part of Mosul. IS still maintain strongholds in the west.

Since operations launched in October 2016, 173.000 left homes in Mosul and Kirkuk to refugee camps, Iraqs migration ministry said recently.

Trapped by war, Mosul residents bury their dead wherever they can

by Loaa Adel Jan 16, 2017, 5:05 pm

 REUTERS/Ahmed Saad--

When four rockets crashed into his east Mosul home in November, Abu Abdel Maliks 60-year-old step-mother was killed instantly. But she wasnt properly buried for more than a month.

Fighting in Zuhur district and surrounding areas was too intense during that period to transport the body to the main cemetery in the suburb of Gogjali, just 5 km (3 miles) away.

So Abu Abdel Malik along with his father, brother, son and nephew dug a shallow hole under an orange tree in the garden just steps from where the family matriarch had died, and laid her there.

We could not leave, we were surrounded. There were snipers all around and the army was advancing, he said last week, showing a Reuters reporter how the rockets had torn through the kitchen and set the trees on fire.

He asked to be identified only by his nickname, Abu Abdel Malik, to protect family members in areas still controlled by Islamic State.

As Iraqi forces sweep across much of eastern Mosul in a three-month, U.S.-backed offensive, residents remain in danger, often targeted they say by mortars and bullets fired by retreating Islamic State militants.

Civilians who cannot reach the citys main cemeteries have resorted to burying their dead wherever they can, at least until the fighting moves further from their doorsteps.

When Abu Abdel Malik dug up his step-mothers body last Saturday to inter it beside the familys forebears in the Gogjali cemetery, he said it had begun to decompose and gave off a foul smell.

Residents in nearby al-Qadisiya al-Thaniya district expect to do the same in coming weeks. There, in the yard of a local elementary school are eight long mounds of dirt where civilians have buried friends and relatives killed in areas recaptured from Islamic State.

Among the dead is an elderly resident who had a heart attack and could not reach the hospital because of the fighting.

One local man, who asked not to be named fearing reprisals against his son who is stuck under Islamic State rule in western Mosul where the militants maintain full control, said he had buried a cousin and his two sons last week. They were killed in a mortar attack in Rifaq district while out buying eggs.

A cardboard sign marks the grave of the cousin, Ali Hussein. Spray paint on the gray concrete wall nearby indicates where others are buried.

We will move them all, of course, when this nightmare is over, the man said.

A ninth shallow pit remains empty, in seeming anticipation of the wars next victim.

ISLAMIC STATE BURIALS

The Mosul campaign, involving a 100,000-strong alliance of Iraqi government troops and militarized police, Kurdish security forces and mainly Shiite Muslim militiamen, is the most complex battle in Iraq since the U.S.-led invasion in 2003.

Throughout the fighting, most residents have stayed in the northern city, Islamic States last major stronghold in the country and the largest urban center anywhere across its self-styled caliphate in Iraq and neighboring Syria.

That has complicated the task of Iraqs military, which must fight among up to 1.5 million civilians in built-up areas against an enemy that has targeted non-combatants and hidden among them.

Adjacent to the schoolyard gravesite in al-Qadisiya is an open field which residents said was the site of a fierce confrontation last year between advancing Iraqi forces and Islamic State militants.

An exterior wall was knocked through and other school buildings have been heavily damaged by rockets and suicide bombers. Weeks after the clashes, a few charred body parts are still visible.

One explosion had carved a crater in a cement patio. It is now filled in with brown dirt.

Residents say they buried half a dozen Islamic State fighters in the hole after their bodies lay decomposing on the streets for two weeks. There are no gravestones or marks to identify what lies below.

We asked the army to do something about the corpses and they told us to bury them, so we put them here, said Alaa Moqdad Mostafa, 35.

Down the road in the Muharibeen district, an elderly resident says another three Islamic State bodies are buried in an empty lot where residents have taken to throwing their rubbish.

***

The following are news stories from the US Department of Defense website (http://www.defense.gov/News) :

***

US-Led Strikes Against ISIL in Syria, Iraq

SOUTHWEST ASIA, Jan. 15, 2017

Strikes in Syria

Attack, bomber and fighter aircraft conducted 16 strikes in Syria:

-- Near Abu Kamal, a strike destroyed an oil well head.

-- Near Ar Raqqah, 13 strikes engaged seven ISIL tactical units; destroyed a bunker, an artillery system, five fighting positions, two supply caches, a vehicle, and 25 pieces of oil refinement equipment and damaged five supply routes.

-- Near Dayr Az Zayr, two strikes destroyed 12 trucks and six oil-refinement stills.

Strikes in Iraq

Attack, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft conducted five strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of Iraqs government: attack, bomber, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft against ISIL targets:

-- Near Mosul, four strikes engaged four ISIL tactical units; destroyed a vehicle, a mortar, five supply caches, three fighting positions, a rocket propelled grenade launcher, two car bomb facilities, an ISIL-held building, a land bridge, a car bomb, damaged 21 supply routes, disabled an ISIL artillery system and suppressed an artillery crew.

-- Near Sinjar, a strike destroyed two tactical vehicles.

US-Led Strikes Against ISIL in Syria, Iraq

SOUTHWEST ASIA, Jan. 14, 2017

Strikes in Syria

Attack, bomber, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft conducted 15 strikes in Syria:

-- Near Ar Raqqah, 13 strikes engaged five ISIL tactical units; destroyed four fighting positions, three car bombs, three tactical vehicles, a command and control node, a tunnel, an oil tanker truck, a front-end loader and damaged three supply routes.

-- Near Dayr Ar Zawr, two strikes destroyed three oil wellheads.

Strikes in Iraq

Attack, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft conducted seven strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of Iraqs government: attack, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft against ISIL targets:

-- Near Haditha, a strike destroyed a bunker.

-- Near Kirkuk, a strike engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed a tunnel.

-- Near Mosul, four strikes engaged an ISIL tactical unit; destroyed four fighting positions, two heavy machine guns, two watercraft, an ISIL headquarters building, a car bomb and damaged eight supply routes.

-- Near Sinjar, a strike destroyed a mortar system and a fighting position.

-- Near Mosul, Jan. 12, a strike engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed a fighting position. This event was not previously reported.

US-Led Strikes Against ISIL in Syria, Iraq

SOUTHWEST ASIA, Jan. 13, 2017

Strikes in Syria

Attack, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft conducted 17 strikes in Syria:

-- Near Abu Kamal, a strike destroyed an oil pumpjack.

-- Near Ayn Isa, a strike destroyed a bunker.

-- Near Dayr Ar Zawr, two strikes destroyed 15 oil refinement stills and nine oil tanker trucks.

-- Near Manbij, two strikes damaged a vehicle and a mortar system.

-- Near Raqqa, 11 strikes engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed 30 oil refinement stills, six fighting positions, three oil tanker trailers, an ISIL headquarters, a weapons cache and an oil wellhead.

Strikes in Iraq

Attack, bomber and fighter aircraft and rocket artillery conducted eight strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of Iraqs government:

-- Near Haditha, a strike engaged an ISIL tactical unit.

-- Near Mosul, nine strikes engaged five ISIL tactical units; destroyed five vehicles, three mortar systems, two unmanned aircraft launch sites, three fighting positions, a rocket-propelled grenade launcher, a vehicle bomb manufacturing and armoring facility, a heavy machine gun, a supply cache and an anti-air artillery system; and damaged 18 supply routes and two bridges.

-- Near Rawah, a strike engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed a vehicle, a command-and-control node and a weapons storage facility.

-- Near Sinjar, a strike destroyed a mortar system.

-- Near Tal Afar, three strikes destroyed a vehicle, a vehicle bomb facility and an unmanned aircraft launch site.

US-Led Strikes Against ISIL in Syria, Iraq

SOUTHWEST ASIA, Jan. 12, 2017

Strikes in Syria

Attack, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft conducted nine strikes in Syria:

-- Near Dayr Az Zayr, three strikes destroyed three oil tanker trucks, two oil pumpjacks and an oil wellhead.

-- Near Raqqa, six strikes engaged an ISIL tactical unit; destroyed two tunnels, two fighting positions, a tactical vehicle and a front-end loader; and damaged three supply routes.

Strikes in Iraq

Attack, bomber and fighter aircraft and rocket artillery conducted eight strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of Iraqs government:

-- Near Beiji, a strike engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed a vehicle.

-- Near Huwayjah, two strikes engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed three ISIL-held buildings and a command and control node.

-- Near Mosul, five strikes engaged three ISIL tactical units; destroyed three fighting positions, three ISIL-held buildings, two heavy machine guns, two mortar systems, a command-and-control node, a vehicle bomb factory, a vehicle bomb, an ISIL unmanned aircraft, a supply cache and an artillery system; and damaged 24 supply routes and an ISIL-held building.

US-Led Strikes Against ISIL in Syria, Iraq

SOUTHWEST ASIA, Jan. 11, 2017

Strikes in Syria

Attack, bomber, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft conducted 15 strikes in Syria:

-- Near Ayn Isa, three strikes engaged two ISIL tactical units and destroyed a vehicle, five fighting positions, a command and control node, a vehicle bomb and a heavy machine gun.

-- Near Dayr Az Zayr, five strikes destroyed three oil wellheads, 16 oil tanker trucks, two oil pumpjacks and an excavator.

-- Near Palmyra, two strikes engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed two tactical vehicles.

-- Near Raqqa, five strikes engaged two ISIL tactical units and destroyed a front-end loader, a vehicle bomb, a fighting position and a tunnel entrance.

Strikes in Iraq

Attack, bomber, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft and rocket artillery conducted eight strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of Iraqs government:

-- Near Huwayjah, two strikes disabled two bridges.

-- Near Mosul, three strikes engaged three ISIL tactical units; destroyed four fighting positions, two vehicles, an ISIL-held building and a rocket-propelled grenade launcher; and damaged 39 supply routes, three tunnels and a front-end loader.

-- Near Rawah, a strike engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed a vehicle bomb, a vehicle bomb facility and a UAV launch site.

-- Near Sinjar, a strike suppressed an ISIL tactical unit.

-- Near Tal Afar, a strike destroyed a vehicle bomb factory.

US-Led Strikes Against ISIL in Syria, Iraq

SOUTHWEST ASIA, Jan. 10, 2017

Strikes in Syria

Attack, bomber, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft conducted 15 strikes in Syria:

-- Near Ayn Isa, a strike destroyed a vehicle bomb and an ISIL tactical vehicle.

-- Near Dayr Az Zayr, a strike destroyed an oil pumpjack.

-- Near Palmyra, a strike destroyed two ISIL weapons caches.

-- Near Raqqa, 12 strikes engaged six ISIL tactical units; destroyed an improvised bomb, seven fighting positions and a vehicle bomb; and damaged four supply routes.

Strikes in Iraq

Attack, bomber, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft and rocket artillery conducted 11 strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of Iraqs government:

-- Near Huwayjah, a strike engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL-held building.

-- Near Mosul, seven strikes engaged four ISIL tactical units; destroyed a fighting position, a heavy machine gun, seven ISIL-held buildings, four vehicle bombs, a vehicle bomb facility, two weapons caches, three tactical vehicles, a tunnel entrance and a mortar; damaged 18 supply routes; and suppressed two mortar teams and an ISIL tactical unit.

-- Near Tal Afar, three strikes destroyed an ISIL-held building and four unmanned aerial vehicle construction facilities.

US-Led Strikes Against ISIL in Syria, Iraq

SOUTHWEST ASIA, Jan. 9, 2017

Strikes in Syria

Attack, bomber, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft conducted 23 strikes in Syria:

-- Near Ayn Isa, a strike destroyed a repeater station.

-- Near Dayr Az Zawr, five strikes destroyed eight oil pumpjacks, six oil refinement stills, three excavators and two cranes.

-- Near Palmyra, a strike destroyed an ISIL-held tank.

-- Near Raqqa, 15 strikes engaged five ISIL tactical units; destroyed six oil refinement stills, three supply caches, two bridges, two artillery systems, a vehicle bomb, a bulldozer, an unmanned aerial vehicle, a roadside bomb, a dump truck, a pontoon bridge, a tank and an armored vehicle; and damaged a supply route.

-- Near Shadaddi, a strike engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed a fighting position.

Strikes in Iraq

Attack, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft as well as rocket artillery conducted 11 strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of Iraqs government:

-- Near Beiji, a strike engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL-held building, a vehicle bomb and a front-end loader.

-- Near Huwayjah, a strike destroyed a vehicle bomb storage facility.

-- Near Mosul, five strikes engaged four ISIL tactical units; destroyed three ISIL-held buildings, two vehicles, two mortar systems, a rocket-propelled-grenade launcher, a vehicle bomb staging facility and a vehicle bomb; damaged 29 supply routes; and suppressed an ISIL tactical unit and a mortar team.

-- Near Rawah, two strikes engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed two ISIL-held buildings and a vehicle bomb.

-- Near Sinjar, two strikes destroyed three tunnel entrances and two ISIL fighting positions.

US-Led Strikes Against ISIL in Syria, Iraq

SOUTHWEST ASIA, Jan. 8, 2017

Strikes in Syria

Attack, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft conducted 28 strikes in Syria:

-- Near Raqqa, 15 strikes engaged six ISIL tactical units and destroyed four armored vehicles, two vehicle bombs, two bunkers, a fighting position, and three tactical vehicles.

-- Near Ayn Isa, five strikes engaged four ISIL tactical units, damaged a supply route,  and destroyed two fighting positions and a vehicle.

-- Near Dayr Az Zayr, eight strikes damaged three supply routes and destroyed 24 oil tanker trucks and four oil pump jacks.

Strikes in Iraq

Attack, bomber, fighter, and remotely piloted aircraft as well as rocket artillery conducted six strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of the Iraqi government:

-- Near Mosul, three strikes engaged two ISIL tactical units, suppressed three mortar teams, damaged 14 supply routes, disabled a bridge, and destroyed five mortars, two supply caches, four fighting positions, a command and control node, a weapons cache, and a vehicle bomb factory.

-- Near Rawah, a strike engaged an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed a vehicle.

-- Near Sinjar, a strike destroyed an ISIL fighting position, a mortar, and a UAV.

-- Near Tal Afar, a strike destroyed a semi-truck.

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