Despair is plaguing Fallujah, where Iraqi security forces have failed to resume control, although Iraq's Interior and Defense ministries have announced the start of military operations to liberate the city from IS.
Parliament member Liqaa al-Wardi, the head of the parliamentary committee on the displaced, told Al-Monitor, “Fallujah’s suffering is by far greater than that of the Syrian town of Madaya. People in Fallujah ate animal feed after grinding it.” She went on, “Yet the animal feed did not do them good and caused diseases, killing dozens of people.”
Wardi, a native of Anbar province, is active in reporting on the suffering of civilians in Anbar’s besieged cities. She has a diverse network of sources in those cities reporting on the conditions there. She said, “No one cares or is aware of Fallujah, which has been suffering for months. The suffering has increased now and will continue to increase in the coming period.”
Wardi added, “The Iraqi government and international community need to act seriously and genuinely to save the residents, because we do not want to lose more people.”
There are no official statistics on those who have died in the course of the humanitarian crisis in Fallujah, only one of many Iraqi cities suffering under IS. The residents of Mosul, which has been under IS control since June 2014, are in a similar crisis.