By AFP – Jun 19,2017 – JORDAN TIMES
An Iraqi soldier frisks a displaced Iraqi man at a temporary camp in the compound of the closed Nineveh International Hotel in Mosul on Friday which was recovered by Iraqi troops from the Daesh group earlier in the year (AFP photo)
MOSUL, Iraq — The Ferris wheel has long stopped spinning but the screening centre set up at its foot sees a constant stream of Iraqis fleeing the battle for Mosul and determines their fate.
Haggard-looking men sit on nearby bumper cars and others on the ground in the shade, waiting anxiously for army officers to call out their names.
The small fairground lies at the end of a pontoon bridge across the Tigris recently opened to civilians that is the only physical link between the two banks of the river.
“Everyone who crosses to the eastern side has to go through here,” said Air Force Brigadier General Jabbar Mustafa, who is in charge of the screening centre.
“There are medical tents here for the families and the men have to be checked against our database before they can move into eastern Mosul,” he explained.
Most of the recent arrivals are from Shifa, a neighbourhood on the west bank of Mosul where Iraqi forces backed by Western jets and advisers are battling some of the last members of the Daesh terror group in the city.
Some of the men are immediately designated as Daesh members or supporters and taken aside, their hands tied behind their backs with plastic cuffs.