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Islamic State abducts 60 families in western Mosul

A member of Iraqi forces looks at displaced civilians as they get off a bus after their arrival at Hammam al-Alil camp south of Mosul, Iraq May 10, 2017. REUTERS/Suhaib Salem

Mosul (IraqiNews.com) Islamic State militants kidnapped 60 families from western Mosul district, a source from Federal Police said on Sunday.

“As the group retreated in al-Shifa district, the militants kidnapped 60 families from the district while the security troops were advancing,” Col. Khodeir Saleh told BasNews.

“The abducted families were taken to the Old City and prevented from fleeing toward the troops,” he added.

Federal Police forces, according to Saleh, “besiege the region from all sides. 27 militants were killed in al-Shifa district during the confrontations.”

Earlier on Saturday, the Iraqi government forces recaptured Zanjili district in western Mosul, leaving only one district of al-Shifa in Islamic State’ grip before reaching its strategic stronghold in the Old City neighborhood.

News reports mentioned that dozens of civilians were killed either during the battles or while fleeing over the past few days. Number of the victims has not been identified yet.

IS fighters have both shot at and executed civilians attempting to flee areas under their control, according to aid groups and security officials who also said that civilians are being used as human shields.

The eastern side of Mosul city was liberated in January after three months of battles. Another offensive was launched in February to liberate the western flank of the city.

Iraqi News