A new life sprouts up around Mosul after scars of ISIS rule

Saturday, 13 January 2018

Even before the Islamic State group took over her home city of Mosul, Iraqi 31-year-old Nesrine never imagined she would have a job working late into the evening at a fashion boutique. But now, in districts of Iraq's second city not left totally devastated by the ferocious fighting to oust the jihadists, life is buzzing again -- with more vibrancy than ever. "We have experienced depression, hunger, ruin and oppression. It is a miracle that we are still alive," Nesrine told AFP. ...

2017: The year of victory over ISIS

Tuesday, 26 December 2017

When we look back at 2017, the most important event to have unfolded in the Middle East was the military victory over ISIS.Although there are still some ISIS strongholds that remain unconquered on the Syrian-Iraqi border and the pseudo “Caliph” Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is still on the run, as was Saddam Hussein in his time before he met his fate we all know how, this dark phase of three years is well-nigh over.On the scale of history, this span of time may count as a mere second, but at ...

Christian Chesnot

Mosul celebrates first post-ISIS Christmas

Sunday, 24 December 2017

Hymns filled a church in Iraq’s second city Mosul on Sunday as worshippers celebrated Christmas for the first time in four years after the end of militant rule. Tens of thousands of Christians fled northern Iraqi towns in 2014 as the ISIS group seized Mosul and swathes of the surrounding Nineveh province. But Iraqi forces expelled the militants from the city this year after months of battle, allowing Christians to return to pray at Saint Paul’s church. ‘Peace and ...

Save the Children: 400,000 children still displaced from Mosul fighting

Monday, 16 October 2017

Around 400,000 children are still displaced from the fighting for Mosul, one year after the start of a military offensive to recapture the Iraqi city from the ISIS, Save the Children said on Monday. ISIS’s self-declared caliphate effectively collapsed in July, when US-backed Iraqi forces re-took Mosul, the group’s de facto capital in Iraq, after a grueling nine-month battle. “Just because the fighting in Mosul has stopped doesn’t mean the ...

US verifying Baghdadi recording, but says ‘no reason to doubt’ authenticity

Thursday, 28 September 2017

The United States is still trying to verify a purported recording of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who had been rumored to be dead, but suggested audio released Thursday could well be real. “We are aware of the audio tape purported to be of Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi and are taking steps to examine it,” an intelligence community source said in statement to AFP. “While we have no reason to doubt its authenticity, we do not have verification at this point.” Thursday’s ...

‘I’m traumatized:’ Narrating the raw stories of medics in Iraq

Saturday, 16 September 2017

Dr Natalie Thurtle has just returned from Iraq where she was working as an emergency doctor in a Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) hospital close to Mosul. She describes her encounter with Iraq suffering through the stories of her medical colleagues. Early in the morning, on the journey to the hospital, I lean my cheek against the searing hot window, looking for a home without its skin pockmarked by artillery, or even one, in some suburbs that remains standing. I count the fallen ...

Iraq holding 1,400 foreign wives, children of suspected ISIS fighters

Monday, 11 September 2017

Iraqi authorities are holding 1,400 foreign wives and children of suspected ISIS fighters after government forces expelled the militant group from one of its last remaining strongholds in Iraq, security and aid officials said. Most came from Turkey. Many others were from former Soviet states, such as Tajikistan, Azerbaijan and Russia, Iraqi army and intelligence officers said. Other Asians and a "very few" French and Germans were also among them. The wives and children are being held ...

A skilled Arab woman in solidarity with societies torn by war, disease

Sunday, 10 September 2017

Around five o’clock on a cold winter’s morning, I was called to the delivery room for a patient who was “not well”. I jumped out of bed where I had fallen asleep in my hijab and scrubs just a few hours ago, reached for my coat and shoes, and rushed out of my quarters, across the field to the hospital grounds. The air was biting and after four months in this project, working in confined spaces, the three-minute run left me breathless. “Not well” in Khost was ...

If Mosul fails, Iraq fails too

Monday, 28 August 2017

Iraq is an ancient place, but a place that has never been its own, standalone country prior to its creation as a League of Nations mandate under British control in 1920. Though some of the earliest documented civilisations came out of the Land between the Rivers, it has never been a cohesive place, with a unified cultural identity. Indeed, as time wore on, it seems to have accrued more and more diversity – of peoples, of religions, of identities. To this day, despite decades of ethnic ...

Dr. Azeem Ibrahim

Iraqi military finds grave sites of ISIS victims

Saturday, 26 August 2017

Iraqi military investigators said Friday they have discovered two mass graves near a former ISIS group prison outside Mosul that contain the bodies of 500 ISIS victims. The Media Cell Security Investigation team said in a statement that one grave near the Badoush Prison site contained the bodies of 470 prisoners killed by ISIS. It said a second grave contained 30 victims. A security official who spoke on condition of anonymity said that based on records of prisoners who were at Badoush most are ...

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