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Russian diplomat says humanitarian tensions over Mosul are white-hot

March 30, 12:34 UTC+3

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova recalled that about 400,000 civilians remained in the city at a time when food and medical supplies were almost exhausted

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© AP Photo/Felipe Dana

MOSCOW, March 30. /TASS/. The humanitarian tensions over Mosul have soared to record-highs after five months of fighting for control of the city, whose people are now faced with the risk of famine, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told a news briefing on Thursday.

"The humanitarian tensions around Mosul have soared to an unprecedented degree," she said. "Iraq’s president says it is full-fledged disaster."

"It’s time to ring alarm bells," Zakharova said.

She recalled that about 400,000 civilians remained in the city at a time when food and medical supplies were almost exhausted.

"Experts warn mass famine will be unavoidable, if the operation to storm Mosul lasts too long," Zakharova said, adding that the Iraqi troops had failed to achieve success to this day and were bogged down in street fighting.

"Regrettably, this is precisely where the (humanitarian) situation is moving," Zakharova said.

In particular, she dwelt upon the US-led coalition’s air strikes against residential areas housing a large number of civilians.

"The population density as it is, what pinpoint strikes our Western partners are so fond of speculating about can one talk of?" she asked.

According to UN statistics a total of 307 people were killed in western Mosul on March 17-22. "These are confirmed statistics. The real casualties are still to be confirmed."

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