"The historic liberation of Mosul should not conceal the fact that the road ahead is extremely challenging," the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Iraq, Jan Kubis, told the Security Council.
He praised the Iraqi security forces and international partners for "an exceptional effort" to save and protect civilians during the military drive to liberate the Iraqi city from Daesh, and for showing a readiness to be held accountable for violations.
The effort was "in stark contrast" to Daesh, which showed "absolute disregard for human lives and civilisation" by booby-trapping and destroying homes and critical monuments, indiscriminately shelling civilians, and by having civilians "butchered" by females and brainwashed children suicide bombers.
"To turn the gains of the military victory into stability, security, justice and development, the Government will have to do everything possible to give the people back their lives in security and dignity," said Kubis, who also heads the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI).
De-mining, stabilisation and reconstruction efforts to allow the return of displaced people, as well as the elimination of Daesh cells and militias, are among the priorities.