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05:25

Iraq: Destruction, dead bodies and aggrieved residents: Mosul after liberation *GRAPHIC*

Iraq, Mosul
February 05, 2018 at 05:19 GMT +00:00 · Published

Laith Ibrahim, Mosul Municipality Department Associate (Arabic): "Approximately 500."

Reporter (Arabic): "Are there more?"

Laith Ibrahim, Mosul Municipality Department Associate (Arabic): "Yes, in houses and roads."

The battle-scarred city of Mosul lies in ruins seven months after its liberation by US-led coalition and Iraqi forces from the self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS; formerly ISIS/ISIL). People were seen digging corpses out from beneath the rubble in the Al-Makkawi area of old Mosul, including what appeared to be the body of a child.

"The smell was unbearable from the large number of bodies scattered in the streets and houses. The bodies were of dozens of children and women," said the Ruptly producer who filmed in the area.

"It looked as if the majority of the bodies are civilians. There were women, children, old people," he added.

After being dug out, the corpses are handed over to a forensics department in Mosul. The state of the bodies is said to make it difficult to confirm their identities.

Laith Ibrahim, a Mosul Municipality Department Associate, explained that he had removed approximately 500 bodies from the area. He added that there are "more in the houses and roads" around.

Once-iconic landmarks in Iraq's once-bustling second city have been left unrecognisable, the building facades have been turned to dust and car wreckage is left unattended amongst the sea of debris.

Residents commented on the difficulties of living in Mosul in its current state, particularly when many corpses remain unburied. Nashwan Khairi, a local resident, said: "yes, they are distributing aid and food to us like rice and bread. But what's the point if we eat and the area is filled with bodies scattered everywhere, is it not better to send vehicles to clean the whole area? Or are they just skilled at making promises on TV?"

In response to a Ruptly request for comment, the State Department said, “Since Fiscal Year 2015, the United States has committed more than $265 million to help stabilise liberated areas in Iraq held by ISIS. In west Mosul, where the challenges are much more daunting with the entire old city destroyed and still laden with explosives, Iraqis have started returning to some outlying neighborhoods and 110 schools have now reopened to welcome more than 80,000 children. Thousands of people are back to work in Mosul clearing rubble; cash-for-work programmes are employing 3,400 residents/returnees conducting clean-up activities. Overall, more than 550,000 have returned to Mosul, including more than 97 percent of those displaced from east Mosul."

On July 2017, Iraqi forces declared the successful and full recapture of Mosul from IS, following an offensive fronted by the government forces and backed by US-led coalition forces, which began in October 2016.

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Laith Ibrahim, Mosul Municipality Department Associate (Arabic): "Approximately 500."

Reporter (Arabic): "Are there more?"

Laith Ibrahim, Mosul Municipality Department Associate (Arabic): "Yes, in houses and roads."

The battle-scarred city of Mosul lies in ruins seven months after its liberation by US-led coalition and Iraqi forces from the self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS; formerly ISIS/ISIL). People were seen digging corpses out from beneath the rubble in the Al-Makkawi area of old Mosul, including what appeared to be the body of a child.

"The smell was unbearable from the large number of bodies scattered in the streets and houses. The bodies were of dozens of children and women," said the Ruptly producer who filmed in the area.

"It looked as if the majority of the bodies are civilians. There were women, children, old people," he added.

After being dug out, the corpses are handed over to a forensics department in Mosul. The state of the bodies is said to make it difficult to confirm their identities.

Laith Ibrahim, a Mosul Municipality Department Associate, explained that he had removed approximately 500 bodies from the area. He added that there are "more in the houses and roads" around.

Once-iconic landmarks in Iraq's once-bustling second city have been left unrecognisable, the building facades have been turned to dust and car wreckage is left unattended amongst the sea of debris.

Residents commented on the difficulties of living in Mosul in its current state, particularly when many corpses remain unburied. Nashwan Khairi, a local resident, said: "yes, they are distributing aid and food to us like rice and bread. But what's the point if we eat and the area is filled with bodies scattered everywhere, is it not better to send vehicles to clean the whole area? Or are they just skilled at making promises on TV?"

In response to a Ruptly request for comment, the State Department said, “Since Fiscal Year 2015, the United States has committed more than $265 million to help stabilise liberated areas in Iraq held by ISIS. In west Mosul, where the challenges are much more daunting with the entire old city destroyed and still laden with explosives, Iraqis have started returning to some outlying neighborhoods and 110 schools have now reopened to welcome more than 80,000 children. Thousands of people are back to work in Mosul clearing rubble; cash-for-work programmes are employing 3,400 residents/returnees conducting clean-up activities. Overall, more than 550,000 have returned to Mosul, including more than 97 percent of those displaced from east Mosul."

On July 2017, Iraqi forces declared the successful and full recapture of Mosul from IS, following an offensive fronted by the government forces and backed by US-led coalition forces, which began in October 2016.

W/S Corpse under rubble, Mosul *GRAPHIC*

W/S People going through rubble

M/S Corpse under rubble *GRAPHIC*

M/S Corpse under rubble *GRAPHIC*

M/S People going through rubble

SOT, Nashwan Khairi, Resident of Mosul (Arabic): "There's is no coalition (forces). Where is the coalition? Let him come here and speak! Who came? Honestly no one has come here. They're scared of coming here! Whenever they see that there are corpses they don't come. Look there are corpses strewn everywhere, in the houses in the streets. The smell is killing us, my brother."

W/S People going through rubble

W/S People going through rubble

SOT, Reporter (Arabic): "How many bodies have you removed since you started working in this area?"

W/S Rubble

W/S People going through rubble

W/S Rubble

SOT, Nashwan Khairi, Resident of Mosul (Arabic): "Rescue measures are not as efficient as needed, there are many bodies that have been scattered here and there for quite some time. Where is the state? Where is the government that promised us they would remove and clean this area of all the bodies and remnants of war that would cause harm and disease to all people who are returning to the area recently? Yes, they are distributing aid and food to us like rice and bread. But what's the point if we eat and the area is filled with bodies scattered everywhere, is it not better to send vehicles to clean the whole area? Or are they just skilled at making promises on TV?"

M/S Rubble in street

W/S Drone footage of buildings reduced to rubble in Mosul *NO SOUND AT SOURCE*

W/S Drone footage of buildings in ruin *NO SOUND AT SOURCE*

W/S Drone footage of car wreckage in building rubble *NO SOUND AT SOURCE*

W/S Drone footage of buildings reduced to rubble *NO SOUND AT SOURCE*

W/S Drone footage rubble *NO SOUND AT SOURCE*

W/S Drone footage of destroyed buildings *NO SOUND AT SOURCE*

W/S Drone footage of building rubble *NO SOUND AT SOURCE*

W/S Building rubble *NO SOUND AT SOURCE*

M/S Man searching among rubble

W/S Mosque

SOT, Alaa Hashem Hamoudi, Resident of Mosul (Arabic): "Our main problem now is the cleaning of the area of bodies scattered everywhere. We are standing here in the area of Al-Makkawi where our houses, shops and children's schools are located. On the other side where we are currently and temporarily living, things are very unfortunate and inconvenient, so we ask the government to speed up the process of cleaning the area with the most efficient means to allow us to return quickly."

M/S People walking among rubble

W/S Mosul amusement park

W/S Mosul damage

W/S Destroyed mosque

M/S Minarets

W/S Mosque

SOT, Khalil Ibrahim, Resident of Mosul (Arabic): "We haven't seen any kind of aid supports since things finished here 7 months ago, only one time I received a small box of food. No coupons, no food, nothing."

W/S Alleyway covered in rubble

W/S Destroyed building

W/S People walking

SOT, Alaa Hashem Hamoudi, Resident of Mosul (Arabic): "We call upon the government to compensate for our losses, by opening the roads leading to this area, by cleaning the area and removing the bodies completely in order to ensure the health and life of the residents here, by rebuild and recover the schools and other public facilities to ensure that people's lives continue normally."

M/S Car wreckage amongst rubble

W/S Mosul horizon with Grand Mosque

W/S Lorry wreckage

W/S Rubble against Grand Mosque backdrop

W/S View of Tigris river

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