By Times Headline Writer
Islamic State group fighters reportedly shot dead more than 60 people this week and hung some of their bodies from poles after alleging they had collaborated with Iraqi troops, the United Nations said on Friday.
The UN human rights office has raised alarm over hundreds of grotesque atrocities allegedly committed by IS as Iraqi forces have pushed their nearly month-long offensive to retake Mosul, the last jihadist bastion in Iraq.
“On Tuesday, ISIL reportedly shot and killed 40 civilians in Mosul city after accusing them of ‘treason and collaboration’ with the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF),” rights office spokeswoman Ravina Shamdasani said in a statement, using another acronym for the Islamic State.
“The victims were dressed in orange clothes marked in red with the words: ‘traitors and agents of the ISF’. Their bodies were then hung on electrical poles in several areas in Mosul city,” she added.
Abu Saif, a resident of eastern Mosul, told AFP by telephone that he had seen bodies strung up in the city along with signs that read “agent” and “traitor”.
He did not have an exact count of the total number of bodies, but said he saw between 30 and 40.
“The Daesh organisation gathered people in some of the streets of Mosul and publicly executed a number of people of various ages, some of them by gunfire and others by beheading,” he said, using an Arabic name for IS.
According to the UN, a 27-year-old man was reportedly killed in public in central Mosul Tuesday for using a mobile phone, which IS has banned in areas it controls.
And on Wednesday, IS slaughtered another 20 people at the Ghabat Military Base in northern Mosul after accusing them of “leaking information,” the UN statement said.
“Their bodies were also hung at various intersections in Mosul, with notes stating: ‘decision of execution’ and ‘used cellphones to leak information to the ISF’”, the statement added.
All of the killings apparently followed rulings by the so-called “courts” established by IS.
Conclusively verifying the details of massacres allegedly perpetrated by the jihadists since the US-backed Mosul offensive began, has been a challenge for UN investigators amid the chaos of the fighting and the threat of reprisals against sources.
Shamdasani said Friday that one recent source was a man who pretended to be dead during a massacre and contacted UN staffers after escaping. She did not specify which incident the man had survived.
(With inputs from news agencies)