Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) jihadists, feeling the pressure from the U.S.-backed Iraqi military and its allies on all sides of their de-facto capital of Mosul, Iraq, are perpetrating a “numbing” extent of civilian suffering, including hanging 66 corpses of alleged traitors, using radicalized children as suicide bombers, and using chemical weapons, reports the United Nations.
Soldiers recently discovered a mass grave containing the bodies of at least 100 Iraqi Security Forces (ISF), ISIS prisoners, and civilians who made an attempt to initiate an uprising against the jihadist group when the offensive to retake Mosul from ISIS started on October 17. The UN added that they expect to find more mass graves.
The UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights:
On Tuesday, ISIL reportedly shot and killed 40 civilians in Mosul city after accusing them of ‘treason and collaboration’ with the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF). The victims were dressed in orange clothes marked in red with the words: ‘traitors and agents of the ISF’. Their bodies were then hung on electrical poles in several areas in Mosul city.
The same evening, a 27-year-old man was allegedly publicly shot to death in the Bab al-Jideed neighborhood of central Mosul following a so-called ‘court’ decision. His crime: he used a mobile phone in Mosul. Six other civilians were hanged on 20 October in Mosul for keeping hidden SIM cards, in violation of ISIL’s order to surrender all SIM cards.
On Wednesday evening, ISIL reportedly shot to death 20 civilians in the Ghabat Military Base in northern Mosul, on charges of leaking information. Their bodies were also hung at various intersections in Mosul, with notes stating: ‘decision of execution’ and ‘used cell phones to leak information to the ISF.’
ISIS has also deployed its “Sons of the Caliphate” fighters in Mosul, which refers to child killers, most of whom were kidnapped and brainwashed into becoming jihadists.
The UN notes:
Also on Wednesday, ISIL deployed what it calls the ‘sons of the caliphate’ in the alleys of the old town of Mosul, wearing explosive belts… ISIL also posted a video on Wednesday showing four children, believed to be between 10 and 14 years old, shooting to death four people for spying for the ISF and the Peshmerga. The video shows the victims falling into the river nearby.
On Oct. 17, a U.S.-backed force of tens of thousands of ISF, Kurdish Peshmerga troops, Sunni tribesman, Shiite militiamen, many backed by Iran, and Christian fighters launched an offensive to wrest control of Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city and ISIS’s last major stronghold in the country, out of the terrorists’ hands.
Besides using civilians, including fellow Sunnis, as human shields, ISIS also continues to use its prisoners from the Iraqi Yazidi minority group, as sex slaves.
The UN reports:
Since 27 October, ISIL has been relocating abducted women, including Yezidi women, into Mosul city and into Tel Afar town. Some of these women were reportedly ‘distributed’ to ISIL fighters while others have been told they will be used to accompany ISIL convoys.
Last Monday, 7 November, the ISF reportedly found in Shura sub-district of Mosul an underground prison containing 961 people, all of them Sunni, and many of them former ISF officers or members of the Iraqi Islamic Party. People in the prison – which reportedly had cages measuring 1 metre by 0.5 metres – bore signs of torture and malnutrition.
ISIS has used chemical weapons near Mosul, located in Nineveh province, and other areas in northern Iraq since before the ongoing operation to recapture the city began.
Although it warned that ISIS would employ the use of chemical weapons to defend Mosul, the Pentagon downplayed the lethality of the agents it expected the terrorist group to use — namely chlorine and sulfur mustard.
“Details are also emerging of the use of chemical weapons by ISIL. On 23 October, four people died after inhaling fumes from burning sulphur from al-Mishrag Sulphur Gas Factory and Field in the Shura sub-district of Mosul,” points out the UN. “The factory was set on fire and shelled by ISIL.”
“ISIL also reportedly placed sulphur in locations in Shura and set it alight. On 26 October, a two-month-old boy died from asphyxia as a result of emissions from the burning sulphur,” it adds. “The child reportedly died as his family fled from Shura City towards al-Qayyarah. In Mosul, reports indicate that large quantities of ammonia and sulphur have been stockpiled by ISIL and there are reports that these chemicals are being placed in the same locations as civilians.”