Iraq conflict - mosul crisis explained
Widespread conflict erupted in Iraq in early 2014 and to date this has affected more than 10 million people.
Mosul is Iraq’s second largest city with a pre-conflict population of 3 million. In June 2014, Mosul and large parts of northern Iraq were seized by ISIL and other armed groups.
Since then the city has been under ISIL occupation and its trapped residents have endured ongoing violence, displacement, human rights abuses and disruption of basic services such as healthcare and education.
Iraqi Security Forces have been preparing to retake control of Mosul for some time and launched a military offensive on 17 October 2016. This is expected to displace around 700,000 people and a worst case scenario could see up to one million flee.
Families are making dangerous journeys to safety, facing risks from direct and indirect gunfire and homemade bombs. Many are travelling for several days with children and the elderly.
The Iraqi government, the UN and organisations including World Vision are working together to prepare for the growing exodus of people from Mosul and seven camps across northern Iraq are ready to receive new arrivals.