ISIS fighters have rounded up 25,000 civilians in buses and trucks to use them as human shields in Kirkuk in the latest attempt to stop the advance of Iraqi troops.
They were taken from the west side of Salahuddin’s Sharqat precinct to Hawija, Kirkuk, where they had their food and IDs taken from them.
Last month, as coalition forces tightened its grip on Mosul, Islamic State fighters launched a counter attack on Kirkuk in a bid to reclaim some power.
Ali Al-Dawdah of Iraq’s municipal office told Iraqi News the reason for taking IDs was to hide their identities from any security searches and added: ‘The terrorist group brought huge buses and trucks, forcing nearly 25.000 civilians to move to Hawija, southwest of Kirkuk.’
‘ISIS called upon the people through mosques loudspeakers to evacuate the western area.’
Kirkuk is some 108 miles south east of Mosul, and the Sharqat precinct in Salahuddin is roughly the same distance to the west of Kirkuk.
On Monday, hundreds of families were driven out of the Iraqi city of Kirkuk in apparent retaliation for a recent attack by the Islamic State group, Amnesty International said.
Authorities in the Kurdish-controlled city demolished the homes of hundreds of Arab residents and ordered them to leave Kirkuk in the wake of the attack on October 21, the London-based rights group said.
Those displaced included an estimated 250 families who had fled to Kirkuk, which lies in an oil-rich area around 240 kilometres (150 miles) north of Baghdad, from other areas in Iraq.
An additional 190 families were said to have been displaced from nearby villages by Kurdish Peshmerga and Asayesh forces.
Source: /Daily Mail