MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The High Commissioner also said that there was a risk that Daesh terrorists could kill civilians held captive, especially those belonged to ethnic and religious minorities.
“We are gravely worried by reports that ISIL [Daesh] is using civilians in and around Mosul as human shields as the Iraqi forces advance, keeping civilians close to their offices or places where fighters are located, which may result in civilian casualties,” Zeid said, as quoted by the UN press release.
Zeid called on the Iraqi government to protect civil population of Mosul and its suburbs.
“We know ISIL has no regard for human life, which is why it is incumbent upon the Iraqi Government to do its utmost to protect civilians,” the commissioner said.
Mosul is the country’s third-largest city and has been under Daesh occupation since June 2014.
On October 17, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Abadi announced the start of the military operation to retake Mosul from Daesh.