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>> Iraqi government forces are preparing to launch a major offensive on Islamic state insurgents in Mosul, their de facto capital in Iraq. Winning back Mosul would constitute a huge victory for the government headed by Heidre Obadi. However, civilians living in Mosul are weary of what's to come once the government forces roll in.
I'm Reuters correspondent Saif Hamid in Baghdad. With a pre-war population of nearly 2 million, Mosul is the largest city center captured by these extremists. Its fall would constitute their effective defeat in Iraq according to Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi. Islamic State insurgents have exercised heavy control on information control.
They banned communication networks and mobiles as soon as they walked-into 2014. They also limited the Internet to select centers which the group controls. Often supervisors would look over the shoulders of users to ensure that they're only talking to relatives outside of the city. Islamic state checkpoints, headed by the MNEA or security committees, often stop people, checking their phones if they have connection to Facebook, or if they were contacting security forces.
One of the residents Reuters talked to said, thank God I don't know what Facebook is. However they did put me in jail for one week for finding dance music on my cellphone.>>
We talked to Yunis, a school teacher in his 40s who managed to flee Mosul with his family.
Yunis said that despite Islamic State's rule is similar to hell, they would still not accept returning to the way the government was before they enrolled.