'All's good in Mosul' claim residents in IS video

'All's good in Mosul' claim residents in IS video

IS-affiliated media has released a video of street interviews with Mosul residents as the long-awaited assault to retake the city began.
3 min read
18 October, 2016
Iraqi forces are "ahead of schedule" in an offensive aimed at retaking Mosul [Amaaq]

Vox pops filmed in the city of Mosul by media affiliated to the Islamic State group [IS] have given the outside world a rare glimpse inside the militant-held city currently under attack.

The Amaaq news agency released the short video of street interviews with Mosul residents on Monday to coincide with the start of the long-awaited government assault to retake the city from IS.

The footage which was reportedly shot on Monday features several locals claiming that the battlefront city was going about its day-to-day with nothing usual going on, despite aid groups warning of a massive humanitarian crisis on the horizon.

"Thank God nothing is going on here in Mosul, it is safe. All the satellite stations are full of lies, lies and more lies," one bearded resident said as he was interviewed in his car.

"It's the 16th of Muharram (October 17) and all's good here. Thank God everyone is out and going to the market," a young man told the Amaaq journalists.

The one-and-a-half minute long video includes shots of traffic moving through the streets, men eating in restaurants, busy market places, hot drink and kebab vendors selling their wares and bakers kneading dough.

"The situation in Mosul is better than usual. It's normal; people are moving around normally. Right now we are at the shops carrying out business as usual," an elderly man dressed in traditional Iraqi clothes said.

      Many people cannot afford to eat in Mosul humanitarian groups
have said [Amaaq]

He adds that "infidel mouthpieces" are spreading false information on the situation in the IS-held city.

Despite the pleasant image IS media have attempted to portray of Iraq's second-largest city, humanitarian groups are increasingly concerned about the fate of civilians trapped in Mosul.

These groups include Save the Children which has noted that families in Mosul have become stuck between a rock and a hard place, scared to remain, but also terrified to leave.

"Some people have managed to flee in the past couple of weeks," Alun McDonald, Middle East region media manager at Save the Children told The New Arab on Monday.

"They say many people in the city want to flee but can't. They are worried about getting caught in the crossfire, standing on mines or booby-trapped explosives, or getting caught by IS trying to leave. Meanwhile, food prices in the city are high and many people can't afford to eat."

Also on Monday, Amnesty International said that thousands of Iraqi civilians fleeing Islamic State group areas have been subject to torture, abductions and executions by pro-Baghdad militias.

The human rights group highlighted the backlash against civilians fleeing IS territory, raising fears the same could happen to Mosul residents.