Iraq’s Hashd retakes important area on Syria border

Iraq’s Popular Mobilization Units (PMU), commonly known as Hashd al-Shaabi, has liberated al-Ba’aj District in Nineveh Province from the grip of the Daesh terrorist group.

The important area is located near the Syrian border. Al-Sumaria TV said the full liberation of Ba’aj and several nearby villages on Sunday came following fierce clashes with Daesh elements.

The fresh gain shrinks the area under the Daesh control in the border region between Iraq and Syria, where Daesh leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is believed to be hiding, according to Iraqi and US sources.

Bodies litter streets of Mosul

A multi-ethnic humanitarian group says the Daesh terrorist group has killed dozens of civilians in the past two days while they were fleeing the embattled city of Mosul.

Dave Eubank, from the Free Burma Rangers (FBR), told Reuters on Saturday that the bodies of the victims who were escaping from west Mosul’s Zanjili neighborhood lay on the ground near the frontline with Iraqi forces.

“Over the past two days ISIS (Daesh) has been shooting people escaping this area,” he said, adding, “I saw over 50 dead bodies yesterday … and we rescued one little girl and one man. But there are still more.”

Meanwhile, a young man said he was among a group of civilians wounded in an airstrike that targeted a Daesh element hiding in the crowd.

“We were a group of 200-250 civilians, a Daesh came in among us and the aviator hit us… but he (the militant) escaped,” he said.

In a relevant development early on Saturday, Iraqi federal police forces seized a huge cache of deadly weapons, including hundreds of explosive shells, which were left by Daesh terrorists in recently-liberated parts of Zanjili.