Aid groups warn of chaos after Mosul civilians told to flee

Aid groups say they are concerned for the safety of civilians following calls from Iraq's government for residents of the Islamic State group-held Old City to flee the area immediately.

The United Nations says in a statement Saturday that "as many as 200,000 additional people may try to leave in coming days" and that both Iraqi forces and IS fighters are obligated under international law to protect civilians.

Save the Children warned that fleeing civilians could be caught in the crossfire, leading to "deadly chaos."

Since the Mosul operation was launched Iraqi forces have encouraged civilians to remain in their homes to avoid massive displacement, and IS fighters have repeatedly targeted fleeing civilians with small arms and mortar fire.

More than 100,000 civilians are estimated to still be inside Mosul.



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