- Title: Villagers find damage, booby traps in area liberated from IS
- Date: 19th October 2016
- Summary: SHEIKH AMIR, BARTELLA NEAR MOSUL, IRAQ (OCTOBER 19, 2016) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF IRAQI ARMY VEHICLES AND OFFICIALS VARIOUS OF AN ISLAMIC STATE TUNNEL WITH UNEXPLODED AMMUNITION SEEN INSIDE DAMAGED HOUSE SOLDIER IN STREET WITH DAMAGED BUILDINGS SOLDIER INSPECTING INTERIOR OF BUILDING RESIDENT, ABBAS AHMAD, IN THE RUINS OF HIS HOUSE DAMAGED HOUSES (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) RESIDENT, ABBAS AHMAD, SAYING: "My brothers, cousins, neighbours are from here. We all lived here, but we left in 2014 and moved to Erbil where we rented a house. We came back two days ago after the Peshmerga and Iraqi army regained the village. We came back to find all our homes damaged." PESHMERGA FIGHTERS AND IRAQI SOLDIERS AT THE ENTRANCE OF THE VILLAGE
- Embargoed: 3rd November 2016 12:13
- Keywords: Iraq Islamic State Mosul liberated villages
- Location: SHEIKH AMIR, BARTELLA NEAR MOSUL, IRAQ
- City: SHEIKH AMIR, BARTELLA NEAR MOSUL, IRAQ
- Country: Iraq
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace,Military Conflicts
- Reuters ID: LVA00154O856V
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Iraqi and Kurdish forces say they have secured about 20 villages, including Sheikh Amir in Bartella, on the outskirts of Mosul as part of a larger operation to retake the city, Islamic State's last major stronghold in Iraq.
Residents of the recently freed village of Sheikh Amir returned to find most of their homes damaged or destroyed and a booby-trapped IS tunnel.
"My brothers, cousin's neighbours are from here. We all lived here, but we left in 2014 and moved to Erbil where we rented a house. We came back two days ago after the Peshmerga and Iraqi army regained the village. We came back to find all our homes damaged," said Abbas Ahmed on Wednesday (October 19).
With around 1.5 million people still living in Mosul, the International Organisation for Migration said it was preparing gas masks in case of chemical attack by the jihadists, who had used such weapons previously against Iraqi Kurdish forces.
Tens of thousands of civilians could be forcibly expelled, trapped between fighting lines or used as human shields, said the IOM, one of many aid organisations to sound the alarm.
The fall of Mosul would signal the defeat of the ultra-hardline Sunni jihadists in Iraq but could also lead to land grabs and sectarian bloodletting between groups which fought one another after the 2003 overthrow of Saddam Hussein.
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