Why this Iraqi City is Starving

IS seems to be deliberately creating these conditions for the residents to push them into hostility toward the government so they will sympathize with IS and join its own ranks. IS blames the government for besieging Mosul and tells the residents that their government is the one starving them.

A representative of the Iraqi Observatory for Human Rights in Mosul who requested anonymity for security reasons told Al-Monitor, “IS has adopted a policy leading to starvation among civilians in order to oblige them to abide by its orders and join its ranks to provide food for their families.”

The representative said over the phone from Mosul, “In the city, the humanitarian situation is bad to the point that it cannot be described with words. The residents’ economic situation is also bad, and civilians are able to neither escape nor end their starvation, especially as there is a lack of milk for children and a lack of medication for the elderly.”

The representative could offer no statistics on the number of people starving or the number of besieged cities, because he is unable to gather them for fear of being recognized and killed by IS.

Jamila Obeidi, a parliamentarian for Ninevah province, confirmed to Al-Monitor, “The humanitarian situation in Ninevah, specifically in the city of Mosul, is horrible.”

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