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  1. ITV Report

Human shields in the mountains as IS defend Baghouz territory

The battle for control of the small area of territory in Baghouz, Syria, still held by the so-called Islamic State continues.

The final enclave remains under intense bombardment from the West's allies, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

But fears for the safety of hundreds of prisoners, many of them civilians, still inside Baghouz is slowing down the progress to end the fight.

As more people stream out, many carrying scars of the brutal fight they've endured, thousands of tiny human shields kept in harms way for the sake of the caliphate also appear from the mountains.

In the last few days dozens of jihadists have been killed as well as nine SDF fighters. Credit: ITV News

The number of people who fought for ISIS is now becoming clear as those who fought and those who stayed loyal edged their way through the mountains to surrender.

But in the sights of those seeking to end their fight others are still holding out, they are proving hard to dislodge.

The mountains which are offering escape are also offering secure protection from attack.

Despite the wish to protect young life and potentially the lives of hostages being held by IS, the need to proclaim Baghouz remains paramount.

The mountains which are offering escape are also offering secure protection from attack. Credit: ITV News

In the last few days dozens of jihadists have been killed as well as nine SDF fighters.

Islamic State weaponised religion and Syrian democratic forces are using everything in their power to destroy the last fragments of their self-declared caliphate.