Over 20,000 children are trapped in Iraq's Fallujah: UN
June 1, Baghdad: The United Nations children's fund on Wednesday issued a stark warning to Iraqi troops and Islamic State (IS) militants in the battle for Fallujah to spare the children, the most vulnerable among the tens of thousands of civilians who remain trapped by the fighting for control of this city west of Baghdad.
Backed by aerial support from the U.S.-led coalition and paramilitary forces mainly made up of Shiite militias, Iraqi government troops more than a week ago launched a military operation to recapture Fallujah which has been under control of the extremist group for more than two years.
As the battled unfolded, with Iraqi forces this week pushing into the city's southern sections after securing surrounding towns and villages, more than 50,000 people are believed to be trapped inside the Sunni majority city, about 65 kilometers (40 miles) west of Baghdad.
The UNICEF estimated the number of the children trapped with their families inside the city at about 20,000, warning that they face a dire humanitarian situation, in addition to the risk of forced recruitment into the fighting by the IS militants.
The Oslo Times