UN: Over 1,000 killed in Iraq in 17 days
Around 75 percent of the total death toll represents civilians killed in the ongoing fighting (Karim Sahib/AFP)
Over 1,000 people have been killed in Iraq in less than three weeks as extremist militants launched an offensive nationwide, according to Agence France Presse Tuesday.
The United Nations' human rights chief Rupert Colville reported Tuesday that at lest 1,075 people have been killed and at least 658 injured over a period of 17 days from June 5 to June 22. At least 75 percent of the total are civilians.
Colville emphasized in his death toll announcement that the reported numbers "should be viewed very much as a minimum."
Clashes betweeen Sunni extremist militants and Iraqi forces have left the country in shambles, with jihadist Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) now controlling several provinces in the country, as well as Syrian-Iraqi border crossings.
In Nineveh, Diyala, and Salah Al Din provinces, at least 757 civilians have been killed in the fighting-and from mass executions conducted by the extremists. At least another 599 have been injured.
Car bombs throughout the capital over the past 17 days also left another 318 people dead and 590 injured.
Many folks have been abducted during the militant offensive as well, Colvilled added in his statement, with foreigners, such as the 48 Turkish citizens kidnapped from Ankara's consulate in Mosul, primary targets.