Iraq witnessed a sharp increase in civilian deaths following the fall of large swaths of territory to the Islamic State group in the summer of 2014. Now despite a string of recent battlefield losses for the Islamic State, civilians in Iraq continue to die at a "staggering" rate, according to a new United Nations report.
"Despite their steady losses to pro-government forces, the scourge of ISIL continues to kill, maim and displace Iraqi civilians in the thousands and to cause untold suffering," U.N. envoy Jan Kubis said in a statement, using an alternative acronym for the extremist group.
U.N. human rights chief Zeid Raad al-Hussein said the civilian death toll may actually be considerably higher.
"Even the obscene casualty figures fail to accurately reflect exactly how terribly civilians are suffering in Iraq," he said in a statement.
18,802 The number of civilians killed in Iraq between the start of 2014 and Oct. 31, 2015
36,245 The number of civilians wounded during the same time period
34,000 The number of civilians killed in 2006 during Iraq's civil war
2,800 The number of civilians killed in 2011, the lowest total since the civil war
3,500 The number of people forced into slavery by the Islamic State