ISTANBUL — A new pontoon bridge built by the Iraqi army in Mosul was opened today. Due to damages caused by the international coalition forces, the four permanent bridges over the Tigris river had been rendered unusable. Pontoon bridges were built to allow the traffic across the river, but due to recent floodings these bridges were dismantled.
Crossing the river with small boats remained the only option, but the charge of about a dollar for crossing was a cause for much irritation for the
As the dismantling of the pontoon bridges left Hammam al-Alil camp without a way to receive aid shipments, with the new bridge shipments have resumed.
"Everything is back to normal," said a spokeswoman for the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
Due to lack of bridges, there was a decrease in the number of people fleeing the high intensity conflict territories. About 20,000 people escaped in the past four days, the UNHCR said in a report.
The fight to recapture western half of Mosul began in February. The operation is led by the Iraqi forces with support from the US-led international coalition.