A member of the Iraqi Federal police walks past destroyed houses from conflicts in Mosul. Photo: Thaier Al-Sudani/ Reuters
The scale and gravitation of the loss of civilian lives during the military operation to retake Mosul must immediately be publicly acknowledged at the highest levels of government in Iraq and states that are part of the US-led alliance, Amnesty said.
The UK has conducted more than 700 airstrikes as part of the Mosul operation, and the rights watchdog said the Ministry of Defence should set up a proper commission to investigate the claims of civilian casualties.
While there may be an end to military conflict in Mosul, there is still no end in sight to the humanitarian crisis, the UN High Commission for Refugees said in a statement, adding that hundreds of thousands of people have been displaced by the fighting.
Many have nothing to go back to, due to extensive damage caused during the conflict, while key basic services, such as water, energy and other key infrastructure, including colleges and hospitals, will need to be rebuilt or repaired.
UN envoy opens seventh round of talks in Syria
The UNs envoy for Syria said that the stars may only be beginning to align for peace after six years of savage conflict, as he opened a new round of indirect talks, the seventh in so far, between Syrian government representatives and opposition leaders on Monday.
Staffan de Mistura ruled out any breakthrough at this weeks negotiations in Geneva to objective a war that has claimed more than 320,000 lives and displaced more than half of Syrias population.
But he pointed to a new ceasefire brokered with US and Russian help, encompassing three provinces in southern Syria, as one source of hope.
He told other hopeful signs were the creation of de-escalation zones elsewhere and the recapture of Mosul by Iraqi forces from Islamic State, whose geographic spread had become a prime ingredient in Syrias combustible mix.
There is a higher potential than we have seen in the past for progress, the UN envoy told a news conference after the first day of the talks, which he is chairing, alternating between meeting Syrian government special representatives and representatives of three opposition groups.
Disappointment has come all too often as various peace initiatives came to naught since a revolt first erupted against President Bashar al-Assad in March 2011, the Swedish-Italian envoy conceded.
But what I can tell you is that we are seeing several stars coinciding in a certain direction, both on the ground, regionally and internationally.
De Mistura and delegates in Geneva were at aches to play down expectations for the seventh round of negotiations, which are set to end on Friday with further rounds already scheduled for August and September.
In principle, the Geneva negotiations focus on four so-called baskets: a new constitution, governance, elections and combating terrorism.
The opposition insists on Assads departure from power, but that is a red line for his delegation led in Geneva by Syrias UN ambassador. Agence France-Presse in Geneva