ISIS militants have executed scores of civilians in Kirkuk province of Iraq as they were trying to escape from the militants.

“The terrorists have executed 61 civilians, among them a woman, by firing squad at a militant base on the outskirts of the town of Hawijah,” Hassan Mahmoud al-Soufi, a commander of popular forces, told the Arabic-language al-Sumaria television network on Saturday.

Another report published by the UN refugee agency UNHCR showed that ISIS militants may have taken up to 3,000 fleeing Iraqi villagers as prisoners.

The report came after a statement on Thursday by the Iraqi Observatory for Human Rights, which said nearly 1,900 people had been captured by 100 to 120 ISIS terrorists.

The Observatory for Human Rights said ISIS uses the captives as human shields against attacks by Iraqi forces, adding that scores of civilians had been executed, and six were burnt.

“The Takfiri group (ISIS) had captured the internally displaced people from villages in Hawijah District in Kirkuk Governorate who were trying to flee to Kirkuk city,” the report revealed.

The Iraqi army and popular forces are preparing for a final attack to remove ISIS terrorists from Mosul.

The operation to liberate Mosul from ISIS terrorists has been planned for months and it involves coordination among Iraq’s military, Kurdish forces, and popular forces.

Millions of people have been displaced inside Iraq as the country deals with ISIS, a report from the UN refugee agency says.