UN says Islamic State using thousands as human shields
The Islamic State group is using tens of thousands of people as “human shields” in and around Mosul while the Iraqi forces are waging a large-scale offensive aimed at retaking the country’s secondlargest city, the U.N. human rights office said Friday.
The U.S. military, which is providing airstrikes and ground support for the operation, said it tried to disrupt the forced displacement of civilians south of Mosul earlier this week by striking militant vehicles being used in the forced push.
U.S. Air Force Brig. Gen. Matthew C. Isler said the U.S.-led coalition conducted “precision strikes” on vehicles that were unoccupied and far enough away from civilians to avoid harming them.
The U.S. is providing airstrikes and ground support for the Mosul offensive. More than 100 American soldiers are embedded with Iraqi units and hundreds more are based in staging areas.