Mosul: US-led air strikes 'leave 230 civilians dead', reports local media

Smoke rises during the operation to retake Iraq's Mosul from Daesh terrorists in Mosul Iraq

MOSUL, Iraq Iraqi forces are preparing a fresh push against Islamic State using new tactics, but operations to drive the militants out of their last stronghold in the country are on hold, military officials said on Friday.

Airwars, a London-based organisation that monitors worldwide air strikes in against ISIL, said in a Tweet earlier this week that as many as 440 civilians had been killed by coalition raids in both Iraq and Syria over the past week.

Isis has used civilian homes to shelter fighters and weapons throughout the battle for the city, rigging buildings and streets with explosives to impede Iraqi troops' progress.

Sputnik News in Turkey cited Aydin Maruf, a representative of the Iraqi Turkmen Front, as confirming the death of 200 civilians due to the bombings carried out by coalition forces on Islamic State positions in Mosul.

Hala Jaber of the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) said men caught trying to leave would be shot while women were sometimes tied up and left outside in the cold as a warning. She added that heavy arbitrary ISIS shelling on liberated areas made it hard for rescue operations to continue.

The child, in turn says he was sent by "Amo", which means uncle, with instructions to target "the army". The rest are believed to be still buried inside the collapsed homes.

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The Coalition did not give details on any specific air strike or comment on a Jadida district operation.

A spokesperson for Central Command, which coordinates United States military action in Iraq, told The Independent they were aware of the loss of civilian life as reported by Rudaw and the information had been passed on to the civilian casualty team for "further investigation".

If the toll is ultimately confirmed by Centcom, which is a huge "if" given how often well documented incidents never end up on their official reports, it would roughly double the number of civilians the USA has admitted to killing in Iraq and Syria over the ISIS war.

Iraq's main industrial city is Mosul.

That's an enormous toll, of course, but is reported from several sources telling largely the same story, including that a single USA airstrike against a large building full of civilians in Mosul killed over 130 people, while the other 100 or so were killed in the surrounding area. "If we have time, we run", he said.

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