US

UN says some 300,000 displaced by fighting in Iraq's Mosul

  • Iraqi boys walk on a destroyed street in a neighborhood recently retaken by Iraqi security forces during fighting against Islamic State militants on the western side of in Mosul, Iraq, Monday, April 3, 2017. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

    Iraqi boys walk on a destroyed street in a neighborhood recently retaken by Iraqi security forces during fighting against Islamic State militants on the western side of in Mosul, Iraq, Monday, April 3, 2017. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)  (The Associated Press)

  • A boy walks in a neighborhood recently retaken by Iraqi security forces during fighting against Islamic State militants on the western side of Mosul, Iraq, Monday, April 3, 2017. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

    A boy walks in a neighborhood recently retaken by Iraqi security forces during fighting against Islamic State militants on the western side of Mosul, Iraq, Monday, April 3, 2017. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)  (The Associated Press)

  • Iraqis walk past burned cars used to block a street recently retaken by Iraqi security forces during fighting against Islamic State militants on the western side of in Mosul, Iraq, Monday, April 3, 2017. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

    Iraqis walk past burned cars used to block a street recently retaken by Iraqi security forces during fighting against Islamic State militants on the western side of in Mosul, Iraq, Monday, April 3, 2017. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)  (The Associated Press)

The United Nations says around 300,000 people have been displaced by the U.S.-backed Iraqi operation to drive the Islamic State group from Mosul, the country's second largest city.

The U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said Tuesday that a total of 392,000 people have fled their homes since the offensive began in October, but that 94,500 have since returned. The International Organization for Migration puts the number currently displaced at 302,400.

Many of the displaced live in large refugee camps just outside the city. Iraqi forces declared eastern Mosul "fully liberated" in January but heavy fighting is still underway in the more densely populated western half. Of those who have fled, the IOM says nearly 236,000 come from western Mosul.