fleeing from the grip of isis ben wedeman pkg_00000617.jpg
fleeing from the grip of isis ben wedeman pkg_00000617.jpg
Now playing
02:41
Risking death to flee from ISIS
Now playing
01:01
Fleeing ISIS in Mosul: Their faces say it all
women flee isis to debaga
CNN
women flee isis to debaga
Now playing
01:58
Women recount horror of life under ISIS
CNN
Now playing
01:30
ISIS survivor tells her story
Nick Paton Walsh Mosul ISIS gunfire orig_00004713.jpg
Nick Paton Walsh Mosul ISIS gunfire orig_00004713.jpg
Now playing
01:20
Iraq forces and ISIS exchange gunfire
Iraqi women react as people gather on July 9, 2016 at the site of a suicide-bombing attack which took place on July 3 in Baghdad's Karrada neighbourhood.

The Baghdad bombing claimed by the Islamic State group killed 292 people, according to a new toll issued on July 7, many of whom were trapped in blazing buildings and burned alive. A suicide bomber detonated an explosives-laden minibus early on July 3, ahead of the Eid al-Fitr holiday marking the end of the holy Muslim fasting month of Ramadan. / AFP / AHMAD AL-RUBAYE        (Photo credit should read AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP/Getty Images)
AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP/Getty Images
Iraqi women react as people gather on July 9, 2016 at the site of a suicide-bombing attack which took place on July 3 in Baghdad's Karrada neighbourhood. The Baghdad bombing claimed by the Islamic State group killed 292 people, according to a new toll issued on July 7, many of whom were trapped in blazing buildings and burned alive. A suicide bomber detonated an explosives-laden minibus early on July 3, ahead of the Eid al-Fitr holiday marking the end of the holy Muslim fasting month of Ramadan. / AFP / AHMAD AL-RUBAYE (Photo credit should read AHMAD AL-RUBAYE/AFP/Getty Images)
Now playing
01:24
Majority of ISIS victims are Muslim
ISIS
Now playing
01:23
Is it ISIS, ISIL or Daesh?
Now playing
02:19
ISIS' battle tactics
CNN
Now playing
00:46
Why Libya matters to ISIS
ISIS hates yazidis terrorist group target orig cm_00000923.jpg
ISIS hates yazidis terrorist group target orig cm_00000923.jpg
Now playing
01:57
ISIS hates this religious group the most
iraq isis human shields damon pkg_00013513.jpg
iraq isis human shields damon pkg_00013513.jpg
Now playing
02:44
Iraqis recount horrors of being human shields for ISIS
isis fratricide robertson pkg_00002526.jpg
SITE Monitoring
isis fratricide robertson pkg_00002526.jpg
Now playing
02:43
ISIS calls on Saudi supporters to kill relatives
ISIS released still pictures purporting to show massive parade of their militants in the city of Sirte, Libya
ISIS
ISIS released still pictures purporting to show massive parade of their militants in the city of Sirte, Libya
Now playing
02:30
Why is ISIS heading to Libya?
iraqi town suffering after isis chemical attack damon pkg cnn today_00010115.jpg
iraqi town suffering after isis chemical attack damon pkg cnn today_00010115.jpg
Now playing
02:34
Iraqi town suffering from ISIS chemical attack

Story highlights

A dozen people reportedly killed in ISIS captivity, UN refugee agency says

Group says ISIS uses captives as human shields in fight against Iraqi troops

CNN —  

ISIS militants have captured up to 3,000 people displaced from their homes trying to flee conflict zones in northern Iraq, the United Nations said Friday, reportedly killing 12 of them.

More than 4 million people have been displaced within Iraq.
Getty Images
More than 4 million people have been displaced within Iraq.

The UN refugee agency said it had received reports that ISIS rounded up the thousands of internally displaced people Thursday from villages as they tried to escape to the city of Kirkuk.

Militants killed, hostages freed after ISIS attack on oil field near Kirkuk, Iraq

“Reportedly, 12 of the IDPs have been killed in captivity,” the agency said in its daily Iraq update, using an acronym for internally displaced persons.

The battle for Mosul

The Iraqi Observatory for Human Rights said Thursday that an estimated 100 to 120 ISIS militants had captured around 1,900 civilians.

It said the militants were using the captives as human shields in fighting against Iraqi forces.

The move is the latest by ISIS militants to retain a grip on swaths of the country as Iraqi forces, backed by US-led airstrikes, try to recapture Mosul, ISIS’ most significant stronghold outside Syria.

Iraqis pack up a lifetime as they flee ISIS-held Mosul in the dark of night

The operation to liberate Mosul has been months in the making and involves coordination between Iraq’s military, Kurdish forces and the US-led airstrikes.

There are more than 4 million internally displaced persons in Iraq, according to data from the UN refugee agency, which said the fall of Ramadi in May 2015 “resulted in significant levels of new displacement, mostly in Anbar Governorate.” Iraq subsequently recaptured Ramadi from ISIS.

Iraqi forces retake air base from ISIS near Mosul, Prime Minister says

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Wednesday that ISIS had committed “heinous crimes” that may constitute war crimes and genocide.