Islamic State fighters may have captured 3,000 fleeing Iraqi villagers on Thursday and executed 12 of them, the U.N. refugee agency UNHCR said in a daily report on events in Iraq.
The report followed a statement on Thursday from the Iraqi Observatory for Human rights that said around 1,900 civilians had been captured by 100-120 Islamic State fighters.
“UNHCR has received reports that ISISL captured on 4 August up to 3,000 IDPs (internally displaced people) from villages in Hawiga District in Kirkuk Governorate trying to flee to Kirkuk city, Reportedly, 12 of the IDPs have been killed in captivity,” the UNHCR report said.
The United States led military coalition is conducting air strikes against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, where the militant group seized large swaths of territory. The fighting has displaced 3.4 million people in Iraq.
The Islamic State’s grip on the area has loosened, but it still controls its capitals of Mosul in Iraq and Raqqa in Syria.
Last month the U.N. asked for $284 million to prepare aid for an assault on Mosul, as well as up to $1.8 billion to deal with the aftermath. The U.N. has not received any of the requested funds, according to the U.N. Financial Tracking Service.