Report: Thousands of Ramadi Buildings Damaged, Destroyed

BAGHDAD (AP) -
Iraqi security forces and pro-government Sunni tribal fighters help trapped civilians to cross from neighborhoods under control of Islamic State group to neighborhoods under control of Iraqi security forces in Ramadi city,Iraq January 4, 2016. Picture taken January 4, 2016. REUTERS/Stringer EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NO RESALES. NO ARCHIVE.
Iraqi security forces and pro-government Sunni tribal fighters help trapped civilians cross from neighborhoods under control of Islamic State to neighborhoods under control of Iraqi security forces in Ramadi, Jan. 4. (Reuters/Stringer)

A United Nations report published Saturday found that the ongoing battle for the city of Ramadi has damaged or destroyed more than 4,500 buildings. The findings, gathered by comparing satellite imagery of the city collected in July 2014 to imagery collected in December 2015, reveal that nearly 1,500 buildings have been completely destroyed, the report said.

The Islamic State terror group overran Ramadi, capital of Anbar province, in May, after months of clashes with Iraqi government forces. Last month government forces retook the city’s western and central districts under cover of heavy coalition air bombardment.

Lise Grande, the U.N.’s deputy special representative to Iraq, says the extent of the damage raises concerns about reconstruction, calling the destruction in Ramadi “incomparable” to destruction in other Iraqi cities retaken from IS.