A former ISIS fighter has told Sky News the group is shooting women and children fleeing areas under their control to deter others from escaping.
Abu Ahmed, who is now a prisoner of the Kurdish authorities, said he had been given orders to shoot to kill.
"People tried to flee, because of the conditions in Mosul, to Kurdistan or Baghdad but they would be blown up by IEDs and if they weren't they'd be shot at even if they were kids," he said.
"The thing people care about the most is their children, the hardest thing for anybody to see is their child being hurt even if it's not with a weapon but [ISIS] are going to use guns on children."
Each day more of Islamic State's territory is being retaken. The villages outside Mosul bear the scars of the fighting.
But despite the destruction there are celebrations as people taste freedom once again.
We witnessed jubilant crowds in Fadhiliya - 10 miles east of Mosul - as a shopkeeper arrived with the first supplies of cigarettes for two years.