The UN Refugee Agency warned Friday that some 50,000 residents of Mosul in northern Iraq held by the Takfiri Daesh terrorists are about to head across the border and flee to neighboring Syria.
“Picture this, we have refugees fleeing to Syria. So it must be desperate. Reasons are the impending battle to take it (Mosul),” said Melissa Fleming, the spokeswoman for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), at a press briefing in the Swiss city of Geneva.
“This in anticipation of 50,000. There are contingencies for potential numbers coming in,” the UN official said.
The UN Refugee Agency says more than 4,200 Iraqi civilians have fled Mosul to Syria so far in May.
Daesh beheads Iraqi journalist in downtown Mosul
Meanwhile, Daesh terrorists have decapitated an Iraqi journalist in central Mosul several months after the victim went missing and his relatives had no information about his whereabouts.
Danial Qasim, a member of the Baghdad-based Journalistic Freedoms Observatory (JFO), announced in a statement on Friday that Daesh terrorists handed over the severed body of Talal Abu Iman, who used to work as a technician for satellite and terrestrial public broadcaster and television network al-Iraqiya, to his family five days ago.
Qasim said the death marks the first of its kind since the beginning of 2016.
Mu’ayad al-Lami, the president of the Federation of Arab Journalists (FAJ), vowed to refer targeted attacks by Daesh against Iraqi journalists to the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague.
Gruesome violence has plagued the northern and western parts of Iraq ever since Daesh launched an offensive in the country in June 2014, and took control of portions of the Iraqi territory.
The militants have been committing vicious crimes against all ethnic and religious communities in Iraq, including Shias, Sunnis, Kurds, Christians and others.
The Iraqi army and Popular Mobilization fighters are involved in operations to win back militant-held areas.