Tags: Iraq | ISIS/Islamic State | mosul | water | supply | cut off | fighting

Mosul's Water Supply Cut Off Amid Fighting

Mosul's Water Supply Cut Off Amid Fighting

(THOMAS COEX/AFP/Getty Images)

By    |   Wednesday, 30 November 2016 04:55 PM

Hundreds of thousands of people in Mosul, Iraq are without water as a military offensive against the Islamic State (ISIS) in the city continues.

According to UNICEF, 300,000 children and their families in the northern Iraqi city don't have water after a pipeline was destroyed in the fighting. The break is in ISIS-controlled territory and cannot be accessed for repairs. Reuters reports the total number of people without water is 650,000.

There are two other major water pipelines heading into the city.

"Children and their families are facing a horrific situation in Mosul," said Peter Hawkins, UNICEF representative in Iraq. "Not only are they in danger of getting killed or injured in the cross fire, now potentially more than half a million people do not have safe water to drink."

The organization claims Iraqis are bringing water into the city from 35 kilometers away, but it's not enough to keep up the supply.

The capture of Mosul, the largest city under control of ISIS in both Iraq and Syria, is seen as crucial toward dismantling the caliphate which the militants declared over parts of the two countries, after sweeping through Sunni populated northern and western Iraqi provinces in 2014.

Some 100,000 Iraqi government troops, Kurdish security forces, and mainly Shi'ite militiamen are participating in the assault on Mosul that began on Oct. 17, with air and ground support from a U.S.-led international military coalition.

Iraqi government and Kurdish forces have surrounded the city from the north, east and south, while Popular Mobilization forces — a coalition of Iranian-backed Shi'ite groups — are trying to close in from the west.

The Iraqi military estimates there are 5,000 to 6,000 insurgents in Mosul, resisting the advancing troops with suicide car bombs and sniper and mortar fire that also kill civilians.

ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, believed to be somewhere near the Syrian border, has told his fighters there can be no retreat from the city.

Reuters contributed to this report.

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Hundreds of thousands of people in Mosul, Iraq are without water as a military offensive against the Islamic State (ISIS) in the city continues.
mosul, water, supply, cut off, fighting
326
2016-55-30
Wednesday, 30 November 2016 04:55 PM
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