500,000 People Flee As Islamists Took Control Of Iraq’s 2nd Largest City
At least 500,000 people sought safety in flight after hundreds of jihadists took control of Iraq’s second-largest city of Mosul.
The militants from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, ISIS, an offshoot of al-Qaeda invaded the city and occupied parts of Nineveh province. Soldiers and policemen were among the fugitives who left the region in order to survive.
According to Mosul residents, after taking control over the city the Islamists announced that they came to “liberate” it. Many refugees headed to temporary shelters in Kurdistan but some of them had to come back as as the Kurds would not allow them to enter Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) territory.
Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki called on parliament to declare a state of emergency June 10. US State department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said the situation in Mosul was “extremely serious” and that the US supported “a strong, coordinated response to push back against this aggression”.
ISIS is an active Jihadist militant group and unrecognized state in Iraq and Syria influenced with Wahhabi movement. In its unrecognized self-proclaimed status as an independent state it claims the territory of Iraq and Syria. It aimed to establish a caliphate in the Sunni majority regions of Iraq, later expanding this to include Syria.
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