Forces participating in the battles against ISIS in Raqqa, comprised mainly of the Syrian Democratic Forces and the International Coalition, seem to have ignored the fact that tens of thousands of civilians remain trapped inside ISIS controlled neighborhoods there. These neighborhoods are now subjected to intense indiscriminate bombardment from these forces daily while ISIS terrorists are using civilians as human shields.
It is estimated that there are about 70 thousand civilians are trapped inside the city. Their current living conditions are a real humanitarian disaster due to severe food, water, and medical shortages.
When the military operations were launched over a month ago, most of the medical personnel fled the city along with other civilians. Several private hospitals are now out of service due to the heavy shelling. It is reported that there is only one operating hospital remaining inside Raqqa city, but it is not sufficient to provide adequate health services.
People living in neighborhoods near the front lines have been obligated by ISIS militants to abandon their houses and move towards the city center so they can be used as human shields. ISIS wishes to prevent as many civilians as possible from fleeing the city towards SDF controlled areas.
Satellite images show great destruction in the city’s neighborhoods and civilians inside the city are reporting on severe damage to houses, properties, and infrastructure.