Iraqis have endured unimaginable pain and loss [Getty]
An air strike by the anti IS international coalition near the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk has left dozens of civilians dead, local and medical sources said on Wednesday.
Dozens of civilians have been killed and wounded following an airstrike on a town near the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk, local and medical sources have told Al-Araby Al-Jadeed on Wednesday.
The attack appear to have targeted a working-class district in the town of al-Hawija, 55 km south-west of Kirkuk.
A tribal official in the city, which has been under control by the Islamic state group [IS] for almost a year, said international collation airstrike bombed the al-Awan district in central al-Hawija, destroying over 30 homes and killing at least seventy civilians including twenty six children , and wounding eighty.
The tribal official, who spoke under the condition of anonymity, said dead bodies and injured people were still trapped under the rubble of the homes.
A source in the city's hospital said the death toll was likely to increase significantly and that all the victims were civilians, a majority of whom were children who were playing football in the district's narrow alleyways when the airstrike took place.
Local Sheikh Abdallah al-Jubouri told Al-Araby Al-Jadeed that "several international coalition air strikes hit the district. The losses were made worse by there being no ambulances or other means to rescue victims."
"This is the single worse airstrike that has targeted civilians in al-Hawija; eight months ago we were getting hit by Iraqi army warplanes but that has stopped. The international coalition has committed a civilian massacre today and Islamic State and its weapons are the reason," Jubouri added.
Anotherl ocal resident, Khalaf Jasim said that residents were trying to recover the dead bodies from the rubble adding that the coalition targeted a heavily populated working-class area and destroyed tens of homes. We've never seen such a large bombing before."
"Most of the injured are women and children. We're shocked the coalition did not hit well-known IS positions and instead bombed residential areas killing innocent bystanders and displaced people. We are having a hard time getting by because of food and water shortages and we can't get our hands on medical supplies in any case.” Jasim added.