ISHM: October 14 – 20, 2016

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Key Takeaways:

  • Military Operations to Clear Mosul of ISIS Begin – Early in the morning on October 17, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi announced the start of military operations to clear the city of Mosul of ISIS militants. Since then, the Iraqi Army, Shia militias, and Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga have demonstrated unity in progressing toward the city from the south and east, assisted by U.S.-led international coalition airstrikes. ISIS militants in and around Mosul have set oil and tire fires to disrupt airstrike capability, and are using suicide- and vehicle-based IEDs to slow security force advances. Several instances of civilian resistance fighters acting out against their ISIS captors in Mosul and surrounding villages have been reported. In a joint press conference, leaders of various PMU militias, including influential Shia cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, acknowledged that only the Iraqi Army and Federal Police will enter the city of Mosul, and that PMU militias, the Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga, and U.S.-led coalition would remain outside the city when that time comes. Al-Abadi has warned citizens throughout Iraq to be extra cautious and vigilant to guard against potential retribution in the form of terrorist attacks from ISIS militants as a result of the ongoing effort in Mosul. more…
  • Inside Mosul: Humanitarian Response and Civilian Resistance – The more than 1 million civilians held by ISIS in Mosul are being encouraged by Iraqi military planners to remain in the city during operations to clear the city of ISIS militants. Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi announced that safe evacuation routes from Mosul will be implemented for civilians who decide to flee. Although military forces are not yet close to the city limits, 912 civilians were able to escape from Mosul to a UN-operated camp in Syria. The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs has called the humanitarian operation around Mosul “the single largest and most complex in the world in 2016.” UN Under-Secretary-General Stephen O’Brien said, “Families are at extreme risk of being caught in cross-fire or targeted by snipers. Tens of thousands of Iraqi girls, boys, women and men may be under siege or held as human shields. Thousands may be forcibly expelled or trapped between the fighting lines. Children, women, the elderly and disabled will be particularly vulnerable.” The UN and a variety of aid agencies have been preparing temporary shelters, WASH facilities, and emergency medical facilities for several months, although capacity at these facilities is still not adequate to receive even a majority of Mosul’s residents. more…
  • Turkey Continues to Insist on a Role in Mosul Operations – On October 18, Turkish government officials claimed that Turkish fighter jets participated in U.S.-led international coalition air strikes on Mosul, but walked back the statement hours later. Iraqi Foreign Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari received the support of the American, Russian, Iranian, Egyptian, and Jordanian foreign ministries in condemning the presence of Turkish troops in Iraq. Turkish presence has been a significant point of contention. The tension increased on October 1, when the Turkish Parliament voted to extend the presence of their troops in northern Iraq, and in recent weeks as Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan continues to insist that Turkey will have a role in operations to clear Mosul of ISIS militants. On October 20, the federal judiciary issued an arrest warrant for former governor of Ninewa Province Atheel al-Nujaifi for “providing assistance to Turkey” and accusing him of espionage. Nujaifi has openly defended the Turkish presence. more…
  • Clearing Operations Continue in Central and Western Iraq – Although security operations are heavily focused on Mosul, Iraqi Security Forces and PMUs are continuing efforts to clear ISIS militants from Anbar Province and central Iraq, and have expressed concern that ISIS militants fleeing from operations in Mosul may attempt to infiltrate other areas. Security forces began shelling the districts of Qa’im, Rawa, and Anah in western Anbar, and the Iraqi Seventh Army Division continued to clear ISIS militants from the Baiji-Haditha road west of Ramadi. more…
  • Despite Lingering Security Concerns, IDPs Return to Anbar Province – IDPs are being actively encouraged to return to Fallujah, Ramadi, and Hit in Anbar Province and to Baiji in Salah-ad-Din Province by local government officials despite warnings that some of these places may be contaminated by the extensive use of rockets, continued presence of IEDs and other unexploded ordnance, and inadequate public services. The Director of the Fallujah General Hospital, Sattar al-Dulaimi, stated that the hospital is in extremely poor condition and that the “volume of support for the hospital is not commensurate with the amount of families returning.” Some have speculated that returns are being hastily encouraged to make room in IDP camps for new displacements from Mosul. For more on the displacement crisis and conditions IDPs are experiencing, listen to our latest podcast. more…
  • Special Operations Command Formed to Assist in Clearing Hawija of ISIS – Iraqi National Security Advisor Faleh al-Fayad reported the formation of a Joint Special Operations Command to clear ISIS militants from villages in and around Hawija in Kirkuk Province. Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi visited Kirkuk city on October 14 where he promised that the “liberation of Hawija is near.” Hawija has remained an ISIS stronghold since August 2014 and humanitarian conditions are dire for the city’s population of 400,000. The crisis has largely been ignored by the Iraqi government until recently. For more on Hawija, read our recent analysis. more…
  • Parliament Reconvenes in Baghdad – On October 19, Parliament held a regular session, during which Members of Parliament discussed allegations of corruption within the Ministry of Oil, attendance of Members at Parliament sessions, and the ratification of an extradition treaty between Iraq and Great Britain. Meanwhile, dozens of pensioners protested in central Baghdad to demand pension payments and cost of living adjustments. Also this week, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi sent a draft of the 2017 budget to Parliament for a vote. The draft includes the previously negotiated agreement with the Kurdistan Regional Government on trading oil revenues for salary payments. Al-Abadi’s office announced that it will put forward the names of candidates to fill the vacant Minister of Interior, Defense, and Trade and Industry positions next week. Despite global attention on operations to clear Mosul, this was a fairly standard week for Iraq’s Parliament. more…

Military Operations to Clear Mosul of ISIS Begin

On October 13, a member of the Qayyarah Council reported that civilians in the village of al-Mukuk in Qayyarah, 64 kilometers south of Mosul, attacked an Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) site and burned ISIS supplies and two vehicles that were being used by ISIS. The civilians attacked the ISIS site after ISIS militants arrested 10 young men from the village for undisclosed reasons. No further information was given about the event.

On October 13, the media director for a popular mobilization unit (PMU) militia reported that the campaign to take Mosul will include 500 media volunteers of which 350 will be on the battlefield and 150 working on technical and logistics media issues. The media director claimed that Baghdad will register over 10,000 civilian activists to produce and disseminate information on social network sites and provide public relations teams that will inform people of the invasion “24 hours non-stop.” The source reported that PMUs may provide transportation, housing, food, and protection to reporters for free in order to increase the number of media sources covering the conflict.

On October 14, a Reuters news article reported that ISIS executed 58 people by drowning for plotting to undermine ISIS’s defenses in Mosul. According to five Mosul residents and numerous Iraqi government sources, a local aid of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was among the plotters. It was reported that the plotters were arrested after one of them was caught with a phone message mentioning the unauthorized transferring of weapons. After an interrogation, it was discovered that weapons were being hidden in three locations in Mosul to be used to support Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) during efforts to clear Mosul. Residents of Mosul claim that ISIS has appointed a new former hardline ISIS militant, Muhsin Abdul Kareem Oghlu, to keep order and is fortifying the city. A later report suggest that ISIS carried out mass executions on coup plotters known as the “Islamic Police”

On October 14, leader of a Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) militia Jabbar Mamouri reported that a large force of the Iraqi military supported by PMUs arrived in Qayyarah, 64 kilometers south of Mosul, in preparation for the invasion of Mosul. Mamouri claimed that the “zero hour” for the invasion of Mosul by security forces was imminent.

On October 14, the Joint Special Operations Command for the invasion of Mosul issued a statement instructing media sources not to publish sensitive information referring to security and military operations and to only use authorized sources for news reports. The statement also highlighted that two media workstations would be created next to the Joint Special Operations Command Center in the Qayyarah Military Base to keep the media up to date on events during operations in Mosul.

On October 15, PUK media reported that 18 ISIS militants were killed in a clash between “local gunmen” and ISIS militants in the Nabi Yunis battalion in central Mosul. After the three hour clash, the “local militants” burned the ISIS headquarters.

On October 15, an anonymous security source in Ninewa Province reported that ISIS militants burned tires and oil wells to obscure the vision of U.S.-led international coalition and Iraqi Air Force pilots in anticipation of the start of operations by the ISF.

On October 15, PUK media reported that eight or nine ISIS militants were killed during a U.S.-led international coalition airstrike targeting a gathering of ISIS militants in the Karama area in western Mosul. No further information was given about the strike.

On October 17, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and President of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Massoud Barzani of the Kurdistan Region identified the zero-hour launch for the battle of Mosul. The decision was made after a midnight telephone conversation between the two men. Al-Abadi and Barzani stressed the importance of coordination and full cooperation between the Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga and the Iraqi Army. The battle to clear Mosul of ISIS militants officially began in the early hours of October 17.

On October 17 at approximately 2 AM Baghdad time, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi announced the start of military operations to clear the city of Mosul of ISIS militants. Al-Abadi stressed that the process would be led by the Iraqi Army and Federal Police and “not by any other party.” During the televised speech, al-Abadi wore a military uniform and was accompanied by a number of military leaders from inside the headquarters of the joint operations. Al-Abadi pledged that 2016 will be “the year of salvation from terrorism.”

On October 17, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi warned citizens to be aware of terrorist operations in conjunction with the battle of Mosul. In a statement to Alsumaria News, al-Abadi called for caution and vigilance in safe areas to guard against reprisals from so-called Islamic State militants.

On October 17, an anonymous source in Ninewa Province reported that Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga forces began operations in the center of Khazar, 45 kilometers north of Mosul, from three areas: from Erbil, Alsafrh, 140 kilometers south of Mosul; and Wardak, 107 kilometers south of Mosul. The claimed that Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga have cleared ISIS militants from seven villages from the east side of the Ninewa Province.

On October 17, Federal Police Captain Raed Shakir Jawdat reported the collapse of ISIS’s defensive positions in the southern areas of Mosul. Jawdat claimed that ISIS militants were fleeing the advance of security forces but it was not mentioned where those ISIS militants were fleeing to.

On October 17, an anonymous security source in Ninewa Province reported that Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga forces successfully cleared ISIS militants out of three villages that are focused near Khazar, 45 kilometers north of Mosul. The source claimed that the ISIS militants’ defenses were quickly collapsing as the Peshmerga advance.

On October 17, the Iraqi Defense Ministry announced that two villages south of Mosul –  Ibrahim al-Khalil and Kani Harami – were cleared of ISIS militants and reported that security forces encircled a third village at Aziza.

On October 17, PMU militia forces reported that an ISIS “security administrator” named Ahmed Omar was killed in the southern sector of the city of Mosul. The source reported no details on how Omar was killed.  

On October 17, an anonymous security source reported that ISIS militants fled from the village of Bashiqa in east Mosul in “fear of joint security forces.” The source claimed that joint security forces were advancing rapidly.

On October 17, Commander of the Ninth Armoured Division Lieutenant General Qassim Jassim Nazzal reported that security forces were two kilometers away from the Hamdaniya District, 30 kilometers southeast of Mosul. Nazzal claimed that ISIS laid IEDs and dug trenches to block security forces from advancing towards Mosul. Nazzal claims that none of his forces were killed in the operation.

On October 17, an anonymous source reported that joint security forces cleared ISIS militants out of the four villages of Balawat, Al-Shaheed, Kahari, and Al-Jayif, located east of the center of Mosul. No further information was given in the article.

On October 17, PMU militias released a statement that ISIS was withdrawing their forces from headquarters, mosques, and churches on the west side of the city of Mosul and fortifying positions on the east side of the city. The article did not indicate why ISIS was withdrawing from the west of the city.

On October 17, PMU militia leader Jabbar Mamouri reported that the civilians of the two villages of Allzkh and Alahud, 58 kilometers south of Mosul, rose up against ISIS and killed six ISIS militants. A later reported claimed that 15 ISIS militants were killed and that ISIS was retaliating with mortar fire.

On October 17, a military media source in Ninewa Province reported that security forces cleared ISIS militants from the village of Al-Lazzagah, 55 kilometers south of Mosul, after killing ISIS militants and destroying equipment used by ISIS. The source reported that people within the village helped clear ISIS militants from the town and raise the Iraqi flag over cleared buildings.

On October 17, an anonymous local source in Ninewa Province reported that medium sized trucks were seen transporting large sums of money under guard from ISIS-held banks in Mosul. There are unconfirmed reports that the trucks were headed to Syria.

On October 17, an anonymous local source in Ninewa Province reported that ISIS’s third defensive line around the city of Mosul “disintegrated” within a few hours of combat operations due to fleeing militants. The third defensive line was reportedly composed almost entirely of “new volunteers” who were either paid or forced to fight.

On October 17, President of the KRG Massoud Barzani claimed that security forces cleared 200 square kilometers of ISIS in the first phase of Mosul operations because of “good coordination” between the ISF and Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga forces. Barzani said that the ISF and Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga are ready to “liberate” people and “protect their property” from ISIS.

On October 17, an anonymous local source in Ninewa Province reported that former coup plotters known as the “Islamic Police” roamed the Mosul streets in police cars proclaiming that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi fled to Syria and called on ISIS militants to turn themselves into security forces to “accelerate current events.” ISIS is dealing with popular uprising within the civilian population and within their ranks as ISF continue to make progress in clear Mosul from ISIS militants.  

On October 18, an anonymous security source in Ninewa Province reported that security forces cleared ISIS militants from positions near 56 oil wells at Ayn al-Jahesh, 30 kilometers south of Mosul. The source claimed security forces were continuing to progress towards Mosul.

On October 18, the Federal Police Headquarters announced the destruction of five vehicle based improvised explosive devices (VBIEDs) and the deaths of 21 ISIS militants during an artillery strike in the Bjoinh village near Qayyarah, 50 kilometers south of Mosul. No further information was given about the strike.

On October 18, Commander of the Federal Police Forces, Raed Shakir Jawdat, reported that elite federal commandos cleared ISIS militants from al-Bajwaniyah, 45 kilometers south of Mosul. Jawdat said that the commandos destroyed two ISIS vehicles and killed a would-be suicide bomber.

On October 18, an anonymous security source in Ninewa Province reported that security forces cleared ISIS militants from the Abbasid village within the Hammam al-Alil area, 24 kilometers south of Mosul. Security forces claim they are continuing to move towards the center of Hammam al-Alil.

On October 18, an anonymous source in Ninewa Province reported that ISIS militants burned files of private, public, and commercial financial transactions in Mosul. The source claimed that that the files were burned out of fear of the information falling into the hands of the ISF.  

On October 18, Qayyarah Police Director Lieutenant Colonel Fathi reported that joint security forces cleared ISIS militants from 80% of villages south of Mosul, including 54 villages from Hamdaniya, 30 kilometers southeast of Mosul, to the Tigris River. Fathi claimed that security forces were able to repel most of the suicide based IED and VBIED attacks with air strikes or artillery strikes and reported minimal losses for joint security forces. Fathi also claimed that their has been no significant increase in the number of civilians fleeing Mosul yet.   

On October 18, Qayyarah Police Director Lieutenant Colonel Fathi reported the launch of the “second phase” of the “Liberation of Ninewa Province Operations” and claimed that ISIS militants largely withdrew from villages outside of Mosul towards the city center. Fathi claimed that good cooperation between ISF and civilians in the province have allowed joint security forces to encircle the city center.

On October 18, the commander of the Federal Police Forces, Raed Shakir Jawdat, announced that security forces had “liberated” 100 families held hostage by ISIS militants in villages in the Shura area, 40 kilometers south of Mosul.

On October 18, Army Chief of Staff General Othman Ghanimi reported that the joint security forces are continuing to advance more rapidly than expected in three axises toward Mosul. Ghanimi reported that he was satisfied with air support from the U.S.-led international coalition and ground support from Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga and the Federal Police.

On October 18, an anonymous Iraqi military source reported that ISIS’s attempt to push back security forces around Mosul was “very weak” and Iraqi troops are continuing to capture more villages surrounding the city. An article by The Wall Street Journal reported that ISIS may abandon the city without much resistance in order to focus on other strongholds in Syria. The source claimed that while there is very good coordination between U.S.-led international coalition forces and ground forces, security forces have dealt with multiple SBIED attacks in nine cleared villages and are uncovering mines, bombs, and IEDs on many of the roads toward Mosul.   

On October 18, an anonymous security source in Ninewa Province reported that security forces cleared ISIS militants from three villages in the al-Shura area, 60 kilometers south of Mosul. No further information was given about the events.

On October 18, an anonymous security source in Ninewa Province reported that joint security forces cleared ISIS militants from the southern and western parts of the Hamdaniya District and are within 25 kilometers of the city of Mosul. No further information was given about the events.

On October 18, in a joint press conference, Secretary-General of the Badr Organization Hadi al-Amiri, Shia cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, and leaders of various PMU militias reported that the only forces that would enter Mosul would be the Iraqi Army and Federal Police and stressed that PMU militias, the Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga, and the U.S.-led international coalition would not enter the city of Mosul. Al-Amiri also reported that he feared ISIS militants would use civilians as human shields and expressed hope that ISIS will dissolve without the displacement of the people of Mosul.

On October 18, an anonymous security source in the Ninewa Province reported that security forces cleared ISIS militants from the village al-Mashriq in the Nimrud areas, 30 kilometers south of Mosul. The operation resulted in the death of five ISIS militants and the destruction of two vehicles used by ISIS.

On October 18, an anonymous military source reported that the Ninth Armored Division succeeded in clearing ISIS militants out of the Hamdaniya District and are within 15 kilometers of the center of Mosul. The source claimed that the operation resulted in the death of 25 ISIS militants with the rest fleeing toward Mosul.

On October 18, an anonymous local source in Ninewa Province reported that there are “clear signs of popular armed uprisings” in Mosul. The source claimed that six patrols of youth fighters have targeted ISIS in the center of Mosul in less than five hours. A later source claimed that popular resistance against ISIS managed to break into an ISIS headquarters in Mosul, kill two guards, and raise the Iraqi flag before fleeing.

On October 18, Former Deputy of Ninewa Province Zuhair al-Araji claimed that ISIS arrested a number of young people in Mosul for fear of popular uprisings against militants and leaders. Al-Araji called for security forces to “speed up the liberation of Mosul and the elimination of terrorist gangs.”

On October 18, an anonymous local source in Ninewa Province reported that ISIS removed traffic signs from the entrance to Mosul, as well as from the main streets and intersections to prevent security forces from documenting and photographing victories achieved by security forces.

On October 18, Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook reported that the first day to clear ISIS militants from Mosul went “as planned” and warned that the attack “is difficult and can take time.” Cook pointed out that U.S. soldiers will be close enough to the front lines to instruct U.S.-led international coalition aircraft carrying out raids, but did not indicate how many U.S. soldiers will be in direct contact with the front line and whether U.S troops would enter Mosul with Iraqi forces. Cook also mentioned that within the next 48 hours, security forces would inform city residents on how to protect themselves from the fighting.

On October 18, a local source in Ninewa Province reported that an “aerial bombardment” targeted an ISIS convoy of foreign fighters and their families that was heading towards the Iraqi-Syrian border. The operation resulted in the complete destruction of the convoy and the death of most of the ISIS militants in the convoy. The source claimed that the strike was a blow to morale due to the fact that ISIS gave orders for all foreign fighters to leave Iraq for Syria.

On October 18, a report by the Wall Street Journal claimed that Iraqi troops were ordered to take a 48-hour pause in fighting to consolidate advancements and allow militia forces to catch up. Kurdish forces are reportedly advancing slowly, fighting through villages and dismantling IEDs on their way toward Mosul.  

On October 19, an anonymous security source in Ninewa Province reported that ISIS used dynamite to blow up the Department of Nationalities and Passports in the Kalakchi area in Mosul. The explosion damaged buildings surrounding the site.

On October 19, an anonymous security source in Ninewa Province reported that the Ninth Armoured Brigade of the Iraqi Army cleared ISIS militants from the village of Kani Harami, 50 kilometers southwest of Mosul. The army maintained a heavy artillery bombardment and destroyed four VBIEDs.

On October 19, an anonymous PMU source in Ninewa Province reported that joint security forces cleared ISIS militants from the three villages of Shami, al-Bida, Ayn Hadid, southwest of Mosul. No further information was given about the operation.

On October 19, PUK media reported that Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga forces and the U.S.-led international coalition repelled an attack by ISIS militants in the Sinjar area, 115 kilometers west of Mosul. Alsurja claimed that three VBIEDs were detonated in the attack.

On October 19, a report by the Federal Police in Ninewa Province reported that security forces cleared ISIS militants from 352 square kilometers south of Mosul since the beginning of the operation. No further information was given in the article about the report.

On October 19, the Chief of Staff of the Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga forces Major General Qarman Kamal reported that ISIS was using “secret tunnels in the form or organized networks” in the southeast district of Hamdaniya, 30 kilometers southeast of Mosul. Kamal commented that the Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga were willing to provide assistance to the Iraqi Army in clearing ISIS militants in Hamdaniya who are putting up “stiff resistance.”

On October 19, the Joint Special Operations Command reported that intelligence sources estimate that there are around 4,000 ISIS militants in the city of Mosul and that there will be an announcement at a later time of the number of ISIS deaths since the start of the operation. The report stressed the good coordination between various military units taking part in the conflict.

On October 19, the Commission on Security and Defense released a statement discrediting rumors of indiscriminate shelling by joint security forces in areas around Mosul and reaffirmed that Turkish forces were not taking part in the invasion of Mosul. The report stressed that progress to clear Mosul of ISIS militants was going according to plan.

On October 19, Governor of Ninewa Province Nofal Hamadi claimed that security forces cleared ISIS militants from “40 percent” of villages in Ninewa and reported that troops were greeted with “joy” by civilians in cleared cities. Hamadi claimed that security forces were encountering only “light resistance” from ISIS militants during clearing operations.

On October 20, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi announced that Iraqi troops participating in the clearing of Mosul were moving towards the so-called Islamic State stronghold faster than expected and that the coordination between Shia militias and Kurds showed Iraq’s unity in opposing the group. He noted that the foreign forces on the ground were not participating in the operation, but providing support for Iraqi troops. Al-Abadi also made it clear that human rights violations would not be tolerated and that Baghdad is working “side by side” with the local government in Ninewa to provide services and humanitarian effort for the people of the province. He also reported that his government formed committees to investigate claims of human rights violations. Al-Abadi and President Fuad Masum launched the Mosul campaign in the early hours of October 17.

On October 20, Commander of the ISF Second Special Operation Brigade Major General Maan al-Saadi reported that military operations to clear ISIS militants from the Bartella village in the center of Khazar, 15 kilometers north of Mosul, would begin at dawn alongside operations by Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga to clear ISIS militants from the Ba’shiqah area, 17 kilometers east of Mosul. Al-Saadi reported that security forces destroyed three VBIEDs and 50 IEDs planted by ISIS in preparation for the operation.

On October 20, PUK media reported that Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga forces managed to clear ISIS militants from four Shabak villages in the Ba’shiqah area, 17 kilometers east of Mosul. No further information from the operation was given.

On October 20, an anonymous source in Ninewa Province reported that three ISIS detainees, dressed in Peshmerga uniforms, were hanged off the al-Jamhuriya bridge in central Mosul. No further information was given about the execution.

On October 20, an anonymous source in Ninewa Province reported that ISIS leaders ordered militants not to use wireless explosive devices. ISIS militants are reportedly placing “explosive wires” under streets to slow security forces when they enter into northern Mosul. ISIS used the tactic before in previous conflicts with the ISF.

On October 20, an anonymous source in Ninewa Province reported that ISIS militants arrested four shopkeepers who violated their orders to keep shops open during the conflict. The shop owners were taken to an undisclosed location.  

On October 20, ISF commander of the Iraqi Counter Terrorism Bureau Major General Fadel Barwari reported that security forces managed to clear the village of Bartella, 15 kilometers east of Mosul, of ISIS militants. Barwari reported that ISIS sustained heavy casualties during the operation.  

On October 20, a military media source reported that the Iraqi Air Force killed “dozens” of ISIS militants when it targeted the ISIS headquarters in Tall Afar, 90 kilometers west of Mosul. No further information was given about the strike.

On October 20, a military media source reported that the Eighteenth Brigade of the Federal Police managed to clear ISIS militants from sulfur fields on Mishraq, 40 kilometers south of Mosul. The source claimed that federal police were attempting to put out fires in numerous fields.

On October 20, leader of the Supreme Islamic Council Baqir al-Zubaidi advised citizens to stay away from markets and security gatherings in all of Iraq’s provinces during ongoing operations in Mosul. Al-Zubaidi claimed that ISIS sleeper cells may try to retaliate against the civilian population in all provinces as security forces proceed towards Mosul.

On October 20, U.S. media source Sky News reported that highly trained and equipped soldiers of an anti-terrorism task force will storm the city of Mosul. The troops, who are currently fighting ISIS in the east of Mosul, will be equipped with tanks, humvees, mobile rocket launchers, and mine clearing vehicles. Alsumaria news reported that the anti-terrorism task force conducted successful operation to the east and will halt operations on the outskirts of the city.        

On October 20, PUK media reported that the Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga were currently moving towards the center of the Ba’shiqah area, 25 kilometers east of Mosul, after forces cleared ISIS militants from the village of Imam Raza in Ba’shiqah. PUK media also reported that Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga cleared ISIS militants from the Khorsabad juncture on the al-Shalalat road that runs into northeast Mosul. Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga forces are working to clear the road of IEDs and mines.

On October 20, a leader of a PMU militia reported that unnamed warplanes killed a senior ISIS leader named Aziz Ali in the village of Tel al-Shaer, 70 kilometers west of Mosul. No further information was given about the airstrike.


Inside Mosul: Humanitarian Response and Civilian Resistance

On October 14, Voice of America (VOA) reported on preparations underway for the humanitarian response during operations to clear Mosul of Islamic State in Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) militants. Despite some statements by U.S. and Iraqi officials about setting up safe evacuation routes and government-controlled screening centers to handle the flow of fleeing civilians, aid groups say there are few indications Iraq is making such preparations. Instead, Iraqi military planners are encouraging civilians in Mosul to put white flags on their doors and remain in the city during the battle. Some aid groups say Iraqi officials are telling them the lack of preparedness for internally displaced persons (IDPs) is one of the reasons they now want to close off all escape routes from Mosul and shift to the “white flagging” strategy, which military planners hope may minimize civilian casualties as well as the demolition of buildings and destruction of the city. Aid groups express doubts, however, as this strategy was used in Fallujah and rather than provide safety, resulted in ISIS militants entering civilian homes for protection and forcing civilians to move with them from location to location as human shields.

On October 14, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) reported that in order to prepare for the expected displacement of people fleeing Mosul during military operations, IOM, at the request of the Government of Iraq and in collaboration with the Humanitarian Coordinator, has agreed to construct emergency sites in Ninewa Province. These will eventually provide shelter for up to 200,000 IDPs. Emergency sites can be established more quickly than standard camps and initially only include basic services such as shelter, water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) facilities, and roads. However, the sites are designed to enable progressive improvements in order to meet minimum living standards based on the displacement context and timelines. Four sites have recently been identified east of Mosul and continuing south along the Upper Zab River, and will initially accommodate 75,000 IDPs. Site assessments have been conducted, and IOM has committed to preparatory work to establish these sites contingent on the clearance of improvised explosive devices (IEDs).

On October 14, the UN High Commissioner on Refugees (UNHCR) released an update indicating that as of October 11, 64,000 people had been displaced from Mosul and surrounding areas since March. This number is a 1,700 jump up from the 62,300 reported on October 4. The number of people displaced from Sharqat, Qayyarah, and surrounding areas since June has dropped to 94,000 as of October 11, a decrease of 6,400 from the 100,400 IDPs reported on October 4. IDPs from Sharqat, Qayyarah, and surrounding areas have been strongly encouraged by government and security officials to return to their places of origin which have ostensibly been cleared of ISIS militants and IEDs, despite lingering human security concerns.

On October 14, Osama Nujaifi, one of the former Vice Presidents of Iraq, issued a statement in the form of a letter to the people of Mosul asking them to stay in their homes for the duration of military operations in Mosul in order to protect their property rather than attempt evacuation. Nujaifi called on the young men of Mosul to support ISF in the operations by joining the fight against ISIS.

On October 14, UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) released a report on the expected humanitarian impact of military operations in Mosul. In a worst case scenario, OCHA states that the humanitarian operation in Mosul is likely to be “the single largest and most complex in the world in 2016”. 200,000 people are expected to be displaced in the first weeks, but the emergency camps set up on the outskirts of Mosul can accommodate just over 60,000 people at present. 100,000 people may cross the border to seek refuge in Syria. With no established safe routes to evacuate the city, civilians will be at extreme risk during the military campaign from cross-fire, snipers, and artillery barrage. Tens of thousands of people may be forcibly expelled, trapped between fighting lines, under siege or held as human shields by ISIS, and chemical weapons may be used. Public facilities, roads, and homes may be booby-trapped with IEDs. Children, the elderly and disabled will be particularly vulnerable. Delays, abuses, and irregularities may occur during security screening of civilians displaced from Mosul. Underfunding also remains an issue, as less than half of the US$284 million appealed for by humanitarian partners to prepare for Mosul has been received.

On October 17, Iraqi Shia Cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, who also heads the Shia militia Saraya al-Salam, called on ISF and PMUs to “spare the blood of civilians” and not differentiate between them based on ethnicity, faction, religion, or tribe. Fears of sectarian targeting by Shia militias have been expressed by various aid group working in Iraq and some, including Human Rights Watch (HRW), have called for their exclusion from military operations in Mosul.

On October 17, Al Sumaria News reported that the cellphone carriers Zain, Asiacell and Korek are now working in Mosul, providing 60 free minutes per day to support military operations and civilians trapped in the conflict. According to Iraqi Day News, they were ordered to do so by Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi.

On October 17, the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) announced that it would issue new instructions to civilians in Mosul in three days, confirming the existence of a plan to address the human security dimension of military operations in Mosul.

On October 17, the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) announced that its Air Force dropped 12 million leaflets over 20 areas in Ninewa, Kirkuk, and Anbar Provinces containing instructions for civilians affected by the fighting between ISF and ISIS. The leaflets advised civilians to stay away from ISIS militants and headquarters and gave “other safety instructions”, which were not elaborated on in the report.

On October 18, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) reported on preparations for the humanitarian response to operations in Mosul: the group announced that it has prepositioned enough water, showers, latrines and hygiene kits for over 150,000 people immediately, with plans to reach over 350,000 over the next few weeks. UNICEF added that mobile teams are on standby to care for the most critical cases of mental and physical trauma among the children and provide protection from sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV). UNICEF has also partnered with the Iraqi Ministry of Health and has 50 teams on standby to start a vaccination campaign against diseases like polio and measles.

On October 18, UNOCHA reported on the humanitarian response to operations in Mosul. UNHCR has 50,000 emergency shelter kits available for 300,000 people. Humanitarian partners are focusing on preparing shelter in three priority areas south of Mosul where the first displaced families from Mosul will be received. Outside of these priority sites, UNHCR has built five camps for 45,000 people and plans to have six more sites open in coming weeks with a capacity of 120,000 people. The World Food Programme (WFP) has enough food in stock to meet the immediate food needs of people fleeing from Mosul and in an immediate emergency phase will provide life-saving ready-to-eat rations to newly displaced families and other urgently-needed humanitarian assistance as part of the UN Rapid Response Mechanism. The World Health Organization (WHO) has prepositioned medication and emergency kits to respond to the needs of 350,000 people and will provide 30 mobile clinics to ensure primary health care. The UN Population Fund (UNFPA) has also put in place 25 reproductive health mobile teams and established 20 health facilities, including delivery rooms for pregnant women. To ensure psychosocial support, emergency case management and referrals for women, adolescent girls and survivors of SGBV, UNFPA has mobilised 23 mobile teams. IOM will carry out psychosocial activities to address the mental health needs of displaced persons, and mobile health teams will be deployed as a first line response to their medical needs. The UN also works closely with humanitarian partners and implements many of their programmes and distributions via national and international NGOs.

On October 18, Amnesty International released a 71-page report, “Punished for Daesh’s Crimes”, on alleged human rights violations and violations of international humanitarian law by the ISF and PMUs. The report documents how these security forces may have subjected Sunni Arabs who have fled territories controlled by ISIS to arbitrary detention, torture, enforced disappearance and unlawful killing after capturing them or placing them in custody, most recently in the course of the main military operations of 2016. This has occurred most notably in the context of the successful battles to clear ISIS from Fallujah and Sharqat, and in ongoing conflicts in Hawija and Mosul. Amnesty International’s conclusions are primarily based on findings gathered during a visit to Iraq between July 27 and August 18, 2016 from interviews with over 470 former detainees, witnesses and relatives of those killed, detained or missing, as well as dozens of officials, lawyers, activists and others in eight different provinces.

On October 18, UNOCHA released an update on the situation in Mosul revealing that reports on the first 36 hours of the military operations to retake Mosul from ISIS indicate military activities on the ground have taken place in less populated areas, not leading to immediate large scale displacements of affected people. Displacement Tracking and Monitoring (DTM), managed by the IOM, for Mosul commenced on October 17. In the first day, no significant displacements were recorded. However, serious concerns remain for the protection of civilians as hostilities intensify closer to and in densely populated and urban areas.

On October 18, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi announced the establishment of safe evacuation routes from Mosul for civilians who decide to flee. No further information is available about these routes at the time. According to Lise Grande, the top United Nations humanitarian coordinator in Iraq, the military has drawn up secret escape routes for civilians that will be conveyed to residents inside Mosul as the battle progresses. This is a lesson from the battle of Fallujah last May, when the ISF-established routes were targeted by ISIS militants after being made public.

From October 16-18, multiple news sources reported on violent acts of retribution by ISIS against civilians who try to flee Mosul, as well as their family members who stay behind. A report by the BBC revealed that ISIS is executing civilians attempting evacuation, and according to citizen journalists’ group Sound and Picture, ISIS hung 20 heads at the Mosul city gate as “blood propaganda”: a warning for soldiers or citizens not to enter or leave the city. In interviews conducted by The New York Times, civilians displaced from Mosul reported that those who were caught faced million-dinar fines, or, in the case of former members of the Iraqi Army or police, execution by beheading. Nearly all of the Mosul residents contacted by the Times spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of ISIS retribution. Those displaced from Mosul did not want to be identified because they still had relatives in Mosul and feared retribution. In the same report by the Times, Mosul residents and IDPs stated that some of Mosul’s remaining one million or more residents had grown bolder in showing resistance to ISIS. Photos and oral accounts have circulated of the Arabic letter ‘M’ scrawled on walls, standing for moqawama, or resistance. ISIS beheaded two men in front of such graffiti, and posted a video of the execution. Another video identified the victims, punished for internet use, as members of the resistance group Suraya Rimah. Last month, a YouTube video surfaced of Suraya Rimah fighters calling on residents of Mosul to kill ISIS militants once the military offensive began.

On October 19, a spokesman for the UNHCR reported that 912 IDPs from Mosul have fled across the border into Syria and are seeking refuge in the UN-operated Hol camp. Local security forces are keeping the group separate from other refugees at the camp. This is the first major group of civilians to have fled Mosul since a military campaign began.

On October 19, a local source in Ninewa Province reported to Al Sumaria News that the wives of ISIS militants have begun to evacuate Mosul after Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi issued a fatwa allowing them to leave the city so as to avoid “capture or killing” by the ISF or Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga.

On October 19, a security source in Ninewa Province reported that ISIS militants kidnapped “dozens” of civilians from villages in Hamdaniya, 30 kilometers southeast of Mosul, and are likely to use them as human shields. News that Hamdaniya was liberated by ISF was later denied by a government commander.

On October 19, the UNHCR reported on displacements and preparations for humanitarian response. Although no large-scale displacement has occurred yet, 1,900 IDPs from Qayyarah and Hamman al-Haleel subdistricts in the south of Mosul district have fled since the beginning of the offensive on October 17 and have arrived at reception centers and a small informal camp within Qayyarah subdistrict. In addition to the 912 IDPs that fled into Hol camp in Syria, there are reportedly another 200 Iraqis near the border. Reception capacity is being reinforced at Hol in order to be ready to accommodate displaced Iraqis. Current capacity is 15,000 people, and will be increased to 30,000 soon with a final target of 50,000. Also, the Hassansham camp located east of Mosul city has been planned for 12,000 persons, and construction should be completed in under two weeks. A second camp across the road is currently prepared to receive 12,000 persons. A formal reception center is planned close by to shelter families waiting to be allocated a tent.

On October 19, the Washington Post reported on the plight of Yazidi women trapped in Mosul. Around 3,700 Yazidi women have been captured and subjected to sexual violence and other human rights violations by ISIS, and the sale of these women as sex slaves is a significant source of revenue for the group. Mosul is known to be a hub for ISIS’s profitable trafficking operations, and the authors of the article, Ameena Saeed Hasan and Khaleel Aldakhi, who run a rescue network saving Yazidi women from ISIS, believe that the majority of ISIS’s Yazidi captives are being held in the city. As the military offensive to clear the city of ISIS militants continues, there is a need to prevent ISIS from fleeing with their captives. There has been some word of plans to do so: Haitham al-Malaki, an intelligence chief with the Iraqi army, said in an interview with Fox News that “the minute we are on the verge of the city, we will notify those assets to go in and collect as many girls as possible before going in…we will also open a rescue path to ensure safe passage for the ones we can’t get beforehand.” The authors stated that if the rescue of these Yazidi women is not prioritized and ISIS is able to take these women deeper underground, it will be near impossible to locate them again. Around the time the article was written, a woman who spoke with Hasan and Aldakhi on a smuggled cell phone begged them to carry her message to anyone in power: “Tell them: ‘If you can’t save us, please bomb us. We can’t bear to live.’”

On October 20, a member of the Ninewa Provincial Council Hossam al-Saffar revealed that ISIS has reportedly threatened to execute any citizen in Mosul found carrying a mobile phone or watching the progress of the military offensive on television. Al-Saffar said that these threats stem from ISIS’s fear that civilians will rise up against them now that the military offensive has begun, fear which has been substantiated by the aforementioned instances of resistance to ISIS within Mosul.

On October 20, a source in Ninewa Province reported to Al Sumaria News that young male residents of Mosul within the resistance movement against ISIS posted leaflets on the doors of homes belonging to ISIS militants “vowing revenge for the blood of those martyred (by ISIS)”.

On October 20, an anonymous local source in Ninewa Province reported that an armed resistance group in Mosul called “the Battalion to Free Mosul” captured three ISIS militants after morning prayers in Mosul. The source reported that ISIS was “researching and investigating” the capture of three of its militants.   

On October 20, an anonymous local source in Ninewa Province reported that an ISIS leader in Mosul nicknamed Abu Adnam gave an angry speech vowing to inflict severe punishment on all those collaborating with the Iraqi government and attempting to flee Mosul. Adnam reportedly revealed that ISIS wanted to stop the migration of Arabs and foreigners to the “caliphate” for six months in order to “activate support” in more than 50 countries.

On October 20, an anonymous local source in Ninewa reported that ISIS released a promotional campaign that addressed for the first time the coup plot against ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. The source commented that the campaign claimed al-Baghdadi did not flee to Mosul and was still in city The campaign also reported that the coup plot had been thwarted after mass executions were conducted to purge ISIS of those associated with the attempted coup.

On October 20, an anonymous source in Ninewa Province reported that ISIS launched a “fundraising campaign” through financial support or gold to support the “caliphate state in one of the most important battles against government security forces.” The source reported that ISIS militants used threats and forced civilians to give “donations” to ISIS.


Turkey Continues to Insist on a Role in Mosul Operations

On October 14, the Karbala Provincial Council threatened to expel Turkish companies operating in the province if Turkey maintained troops in northern Iraq. The Council called Turkey’s military presence “blatant interference” into internal Iraqi affairs and rejected Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s claim that Turkish troops will participate in the upcoming battle of Mosul. Rhetoric between Turkey and Iraq escalated on Tuesday, October 12, when Erdogan told Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi in a statement that he needed to “know his place” in this situation. The increased tensions began on October 1 when the Turkish Parliament voted to extend the presence of Turkish troops in northern Iraq.

On October 14, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced in a speech his country’s determination to participate in the planned operation by coalition forces to oust the so-called Islamic State from the Iraqi city of Mosul. Ankara has been locked in a fierce war of words with Baghdad since the Turkish Parliament’s decision on October 1 to extend the stay of Turkish troops in northern Iraq in preparation for the battle of Mosul. Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi has said Turkey risks triggering a regional war with his words and his troops’ actions. Iraq requested an emergency session of the UN Security Council to discuss the issue, and both countries have summoned each other’s ambassadors in a mounting diplomatic standoff. In the speech, Erdogan said, “Excuse me, but I won’t leave” in response to the Iraqi government’s demands.

On October 15, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi stressed in a televised speech that the Iraqi government would not allow Turkish troops stationed in northern Iraq to participate in the clearing of Mosul “in any way.” Al-Abadi reiterated that Turkey will not aid in the planning or implementation of the clearing because Iraq does not need foreign military forces fighting on Iraq’s behalf. Tensions increased between the two nations after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan insisted in a speech on October 14 that Turkish troops would participate in the battle of Mosul.

On October 15, head of the Shia State of Law Coalition and former Prime Minister, Nouri al-Maliki, called the Turkish “invasion” a “conspiracy” to divide the city of Mosul during the upcoming battle to clear the city of Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) militants. Maliki stated in a speech on Saturday that Turkish “intervention” led by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan would be “devastating and dangerous to the unity of Iraq.” Maliki’s comments come after Erdogan’s promise that Turkish troops would participate in the battle of Mosul.

On October 17, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan warned in a press conference of “serious consequences” if Turkish troops did not participate in the battle of Mosul. Erdogan expressed astonishment at the thought that Baghdad would prevent Turkey from participating in the process. Turkey sent reinforcement troops on Monday, coinciding with the start of the battle of Mosul. The Iraqi government has forcefully rejected the Turkish Parliament’s decision on October 1 to extend the stay of troops in Iraq.

On October 17, the Iraqi Foreign Ministry announced that a “high-level” Turkish government delegation will arrive in Baghdad to discuss the issue of withdrawal of Turkish troops from Iraq. Turkish media confirmed that the Deputy Foreign Minister, Umit Aalchen, will head the delegation. Unlike Iraqi media reports, the Turkish media reported that the agenda of the meeting will involve discussion to authorize Turkish troops to remain in their current camps in northern Iraq. The Ministry’s spokesman, Ahmed Gamal, said in a statement that the request for a visit came from the Turkish side. Turkey sent military reinforcements to its border with Iraq on October 17, coinciding with the start of the battle of Mosul.

On October 17, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi commented in a meeting with ambassadors and representatives of diplomatic missions to Iraq that Iraq aimed to establish “good and balanced” relationships with neighbors. However, al-Abadi warned Turkish leadership not to make a “fatal mistake” like the one committed by Saddam Hussein and to deal in “guardianships of countries.” Al-Abadi noted that the entrance of Turkish troops in Iraqi affairs “is not a picnic.”  

On October 18, the Iraqi Foreign Ministry confirmed the arrival of the Turkish delegation to Baghdad. The Ministry’s spokesman, Ahmad Jamal, said in a statement that the Turkish delegation presented ideas on its troops in Iraq but that none of them “lived up to the demands of the Iraqi government.” Jamal reiterated that Iraq will only accept a full withdrawal of Turkish troops from northern Iraq to show Turkey respects Iraq’s sovereignty. Later in the day, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi reiterated Jamal’s comments that the Turkish proposals were not acceptable and that the continued “interference in Iraqi affairs is dangerous.”

On October 18, thousands of Iraqi citizens gathered in front of the Turkish Embassy in Baghdad to condemn and protest the presence of Turkish troops in northern Iraq. A protester told a reporter the protest was meant to express the people’s support for its security forces in the fight against the so-called Islamic State. The protester added that he views the Turkish presence as an “occupation.” The General Directorate of Traffic blocked off all roads leading to the embassy in anticipation of the massive protests, as it was publicly orchestrated by the leader of the Shia Sadr political bloc, Muqtada al-Sadr.

On October 18, the Turkish Foreign Ministry announced that the Iraqi delegation will meet in Turkey sometime this week, possibly Thursday, in another attempt to resolve the Turkish troop issue through dialogue. The meeting will focus on the presence of Turkish troops in Iraq and their role in the battle of Mosul. While Turkey’s President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has said Turkey will absolutely participate in the operation, Iraq’s Prime Minister, Haider al-Abadi, has completely rejected that notion.

On October 18, Iraqi Foreign Minister, Ibrahim al-Jaafari received the support of the American, Russian, Iranian, Egyptian, and Jordanian foreign ministries in condemning the presence of Turkish troops in Iraq. Al-Jaafari received the support during a unilateral meeting being held in Switzerland on the Syrian crisis.

On October 18, Iraqi Foreign Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari arrived in Brussels, Belgium for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) meeting that aims to increase the volume of assistance from European Union (EU) members to Iraq to help eliminate terrorism and end the Turkish “occupation” in Iraq. In a statement to Alsumaria news, the Foreign Ministry announced that al-Jaafari will head the Iraqi delegation at the NATO meeting and that the Iraqi delegation will hold a meeting with representatives of all 28 EU members. The goal of these talks is to mobilize humanitarian services and support the Iraqi army in the battle of Mosul to clear the city of so-called Islamic State militants.

On October 18, Turkish government officials claimed that Turkish fighter jets participated on Monday in coalition air strikes on Mosul. Turkish Prime Minister Ben Ali Yildirim said in a press release that Turkey participated in airstrikes carried out by the U.S.-led international coalition to eliminate ISIS militants in Mosul. Less than two hours later, Yildirim backtracked his comments when asked for clarification from reporters. Yildirim told reporters that there is an agreement “in principle” for the Turkish air force to be a part of the U.S.-led coalition and that Turkish planes would join “when necessary,” not that they had already participated in airstrikes. Yildirim continued saying, that he does not know “the details of the operation” but what is important is that Turkey will be a part of the coalition. He added that Turkey will do “everything necessary” against all kinds of threats and that the country did not need permission from others. However, Foreign Policy reported that the Turkish government tweeted comments from the Defense Minister that said they had “reached an agreement with coalition forces to include [their] Air Force” in air strikes on Mosul. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said earlier in the day that Iraq could not deal with the so-called Islamic State in Mosul on its own and that the presence of Turkish troops in a nearby military camp was an insurance against possible attacks on Turkey. Turkey’s determination to participate in the battle of Mosul incorporates its decades-long battle with the Shia Kurdistan Worker’s Party (PKK), which holds territory in southeast Turkey. Since the late 1970s, Turkey has been fighting the PKK, which wants to establish an independent territory free of Turkish rule. Turkey fears that the battle of Mosul will allow Shia Popular Mobilization Units (PMUs), who are aiding in the operation, to reclaim Mosul for their own, which could lead to a sectarian battle between the Sunni Arabs, Turkmen, and Sunni Kurds that are still in Mosul. It is possible that the PKK will take advantage of this chaos and carve out more territory for itself, something Turkey desperately wants to prevent.

On October 19, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan claimed that Turkey’s attitude towards Iraq is not meant to be seen as a “violation of its sovereignty,” noting that his country will be in Mosul in order to fight for Turkey’s “independence” and “future.” In response to the tension between Turkey and Iraq, the Pentagon announced that U.S. Secretary of Defense, Ashton Carter, will pay an official visit to Ankara on Friday to discuss official developments in Iraq, Syria, and in particular, the battle of Mosul. In an official statement, the Department of Defense said Carter will also discuss the Turkish government’s position and statements over its role in the battle of Mosul in Iraq and the presence of of Turkish troops in northern Iraq.

On October 19, an anonymous senior political source revealed that the official Turkish delegation that arrived in Baghdad yesterday included intelligence and border security representatives along with representatives from the Foreign Ministry. The source mentioned that the Turkish delegation wanted to speak more on the issue of removing the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) from Iraq and not discuss the possibility of Turkish troops withdrawing from Iraq. The Iraqi side rejected the possibility of discussing anything other than the troops’ presence and would not negotiate on the issue.

On October 20, the federal judiciary issued an arrest warrant for the former governor of Ninewa Province, Atheel al-Nujaifi, for “providing assistance to Turkey” and accusing him of espionage. A statement released by the court claims Nujaifi facilitated the entry of Turkish forces into Iraq. Nujaifi has historical, ancestral, and political ties to Turkey, and during his term as governor, controlled the base where Turkish troops are currently positioned. After Turkey initially built the military base in Northern Iraq last December, Nujaifi openly defended Turkey’s move to establish a sphere of influence in Northern Iraq.

On October 20, Russian President Vladimir Putin reportedly mediated a phone call between Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan that became contentious while the two leaders discussed the issue of Turkish troops participating in the battle of Mosul. A statement from al-Abadi’s office commented that the call involved bilateral relations between Iraq and Turkey in addition to the issue of Turkish troops in Iraq. The statement noted that al-Abadi stressed in the phone call that the Turkish presence is unacceptable. Since the beginning of operations in Mosul on October 17, there have been conflicting reports on Turkey’s participation in the battle.


Clearing Operations Continue in Central and Western Iraq

On October 13, Diyala Provincial Council Member Ahmed al-Rubaie reported that violence in the Moratorium area, 20 kilometers northeast of Baquba, has increased by over 50 percent in the past few months. Rubaie reported that the increase in mortar strikes and attacks on security forces was due to the return of Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) militants in the area.

On October 13, head of the security committee in the Diyala Provincial Council Sadiq al-Husseini reported that joint security forces defused six IEDs on an agricultural road, 80 kilometers north of Baquba. Husseini claimed that the 20 kilogram explosives targeted military convoys that were passing the area.  

On October 14, an anonymous military source in Anbar Province reported that security forces seized 146 rockets called “caliphate missiles,” 107 improvised explosive devices (IEDs), and 950 mortar stacked shells in northern Ramadi. No further information was given about the event.

On October 14, an anonymous senior military source reported that security forces managed to repell an attack by ISIS militants in western Rutba, 310 kilometers west of Ramadi. The operation resulted in the death of six militants and the destruction of three vehicles and a vehicle based IED.

On October 14, Head of the Security Committee in Abu Sayda Awad al-Rubaie reported that people in Abu Garma within Abu Sayda, 25 kilometers northeast of Baquba, are staging a peaceful protest in response to the growing threat of ISIS sleeper cells within their village. The villagers gave Operation Command in the Tigris 72 hours to act on their behalf without expanding on what would happen after the 72 hours ended

On October 14, an anonymous local military source reported that Iraqi Seventh Army Division and popular mobilization unit (PMU) militias were continuing to clear the Baiji-Haditha road, 160 kilometers west of Ramadi. The source reported that the Iraqi 27th Army Division will take over the road’s security and maintenance after all ISIS militants and IEDs were cleared.

On October 14, head of the security committee of the Diyala Provincial Council Sadiq al-Husseini reported that joint security forces backed by PMU militias seized explosive belts in a village on the border of Diyala and Salah al-Din Provinces. No further information was given about the event.

On October 14, Member of Parliament for the Diyala Province Raad Faris Almas Salman called for an emergency security meeting to create security ideas after security situations have developed in the Moratorium Basin, 20 kilometers northeast of Baquba. Salman expressed concerns over mortar casualties and the targeting of security checkpoints by ISIS militants and claimed that if the security situation was not addressed then it could lead to the re-emergence of ISIS in Diyala.

On October 15, intelligence director of the al-Somoud Brigade PMU, Nazim Al-Jughaifi, reported that four ISIS militants were killed in an armed clash between PMUs and ISIS in an area 180 kilometers west of Ramadi. The clash happened after prominent leaders of ISIS and their families fled Iraq for Syria, leaving only a small number of ISIS militants in Anbar to fight security forces.

On October 15, intelligence director of the al-Somoud Brigade PMU, Nazim Al-Jughaifi, reported that security forces found maps and documents cataloging trenches, secret roads and possible ISIS cell locations in Anbar. Al-Jughaifi commented that the documents will help security forces quickly clear further ISIS militants and IED from cleared areas in Anbar.

On October 15, an anonymous security source in Anbar Province reported that seven ISIS militants were killed after security forces successfully repelled an ISIS attack in the Al-Khasfa area, 125 kilometers northwest of Ramadi. Security forces were also able to destroy two vehicles with a 23 mm mounted gun and a rocket launcher during the attack. The source reported that many ISIS militants are fleeing to Syria due to the inability to strike at targets within Iraq without overwhelming retaliation from ISF.  

On October 15, an anonymous source in Anbar Province reported that a man was killed when a grenade went off in his house in Ramadi. The source claimed that the grenade was left in the house by ISIS militants before security forces cleared Ramadi in late December 2015.

On October 15, an anonymous security source in Salah al-Din reported that eight security forces were killed and eleven were injured when ISIS militants attacked security forces in the Mtaibijh area, 100 kilometers south of Tikrit. Security forces were able to repel the attack and kill three ISIS militants and destroy two vehicles used by ISIS. Security forces reinforced the area in response to a perceived direct threat against the city of Samarra by ISIS militants.

On October 16, spokesman for the Anbar Tribal Fighter Ghassan Ithawi claimed that security forces must remain “wary” that ISIS militants may escape the invasion of Mosul and “infiltrate” areas that security forces previously cleared in western Anbar in hopes of accessing Syria. Ithawi called for tightened security to prevent any “loopholes” that ISIS could use to infiltrate Anbar Province.

On October 16, Diyala Police Chief Major General Jassim al-Saadi reported that Diyala provincial police with support from the PMU Badr Brigade conducted a security operation in the Hamrin Mountains, 42 kilometers northeast of Tikrit, area in order to eliminate footholds that ISIS militants could use and destroy “sleeper cells” in the region. During the operation, security forces managed to arrest three unnamed ISIS leaders and destroy two ISIS camps, military equipment, explosives, two trailers, a tractor, and a motorcycle that ISIS was using to attack security forces.

On October 16, an anonymous security source in Salah al-Din Province reported that a PMU militia attacked provincial police and seized their weapons, claiming that they were responsible for the region and backed by “supreme bodies.” The source reported that police were experiencing security breaches, property theft, and the killing of displaced civilians and that this was not the first time conflict had emerged between PMUs and provincial police in the area.

On October 17, an anonymous security source reported that 12 ISIS militants were killed when an Iraqi Security Force (ISF) missile hit an area controlled by ISIS in Rawa, 210 kilometers west of Ramadi. No further information was given about the strike.

On October 17, leader of a PMU militia Uday Alkhaddran reported that ISIS militants destroyed five medium sized irrigation pumps near the basin area, 95 kilometers north of Baquba. Alkhaddran claimed that ISIS destroyed the pumps to deprive civilians from areas cleared of ISIS militants of food.  

On October 17, an anonymous security source in the Salah al-Din Province reported that one Iraqi Army unit was killed and four PMU militia fighters were injured when a sniper opened fire on security forces from the west coast of Sharqat, 120 kilometers north of Tikrit. No further information was given about the event.

On October 17, an anonymous source in Samarra reported that “a number” of ISIS militants were killed when the Iraqi Air Force targeted a convoy in the Mtaibijh area, 100 kilometers south of Tikrit. The strike also resulted in the destruction of four vehicles used by ISIS.

On October 18, Fallujah Police Chief Colonel Jamal al-Jumaili reported that security forces arrested a leader of ISIS connected with ISIS’s Ministry of Finance trying to enter Fallujah, 62 kilometers west of Baghdad, with internally displaced people (IDPs). Jumaili refused to disclose the identities of the ISIS members until the intelligence investigation was complete.

On October 18, intelligence director of the al-Somoud Brigade PMU, Nazim Al-Jughaifi, reported that ISIS was attempting to stop ISIS militants and their families from fleeing Iraq to Syria in order to keep the largest possible number of fighters in the cities in western Anbar. Al-Jughaifi reported that ISIS is forcing ISIS families to stay inside their homes in areas west of Ramadi.

On October 18, commander of a PMU militia in Anbar reported that joint security forces found a mass grave containing 80 ISIS militants during a security operation in Hit, 70 kilometers west of Ramadi. The commander later suggested that the mass graves were meant to “cover up and not disclose” the number of ISIS militants killed during operations to clear Anbar of ISIS militants.

On October 19, a commander of a PMU militia in Anbar Province Sheikh Saad Alsamarmd reported that security forces began shelling the districts of Qa’im, 217 kilometers northwest Ramadi; Rawa, 170 kilometers northwest of Ramadi; and Anah, 157 kilometers northwest of Ramadi. Alsamarmd reported that security forces with support from the U.S.-led international coalition and Iraqi Air Force are bombing ISIS sites and are preparing for the “zero hour” to clear western Anbar of ISIS militants.

On October 20, leadership of a PMU militia reported that 70 ISIS militants attacked the Reed Bashir, a village located between Tall Ahmad and Aziziyah south of Mosul. The PMU responded by “responding massively” and forcing the attackers to withdraw. No further information was given about the attack.


Despite Lingering Security Concerns, IDPs Return to Anbar Province

On October 14, the Iraqi Observatory for Human Rights (IOHR) reported that “some” families displaced from Salah ad-Din and Anbar Provinces to Kirkuk were forced to hand over their identification documents to Asayish Forces, the intelligence arm of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), and were then forcibly deported. The article did not specify the number of families affected. The report added that many IDPs were forced to return to their cities of origin despite the security risks that still exist in those places. Azad Jabari, the head of the Security Committee in the Kirkuk Provincial Council, cited these actions as individual acts committed by a minority of security forces. IOHR condemned the forced returns, citing article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, “individual or mass forcible transfers, as well as deportations of protected persons are prohibited.”

On October 15, the Mayor of Fallujah, Isa al-Sayer, declared Fallujah to be “free” of harmful radiation and chemicals, based on tests conducted by ad hoc committees of the Ministry of Health and Environment. The extensive use of rockets and improvised explosive devices (IEDs) by the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) in Fallujah over the past three years prompted medical and environmental authorities to investigate the extent of chemical contamination. Al-Sayer stressed the “lack of pollution” in residential areas and agricultural villages. Al-Sayer has consistently encouraged returns to Fallujah, assuaging fears among internally displaced persons (IDPs) about the health and security situation in the city with many statements of progress in restoration efforts.

On October 16, the Anbar Provincial Council announced the first return of IDPs to the districts of Albu Faraj and Albu Ali Jassim in the greater Ramadi area, north and northwest of the city center. Ramadi was cleared of ISIS militants by Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) on December 28, 2015, but the security situation in the area has remained insecure, hindering returns. The Council stated that the number of returns “exceeded hundreds of families” and encouraged more IDPs to return, confirming that rehabilitation projects of public services such as water and electricity are underway.

On October 16, the Mayor of Hit, in Anbar Province, Mohannad Zabar, announced the “intensive return” of IDPs to the city center of Hit. The Mayor stated that the security situation had “improved dramatically.” Hit was cleared of ISIS militants April 2016, but security forces have struggled to remove IEDs and secure the city center in order to accommodate IDP returns.

On October 17, the Ministry of Displacement and Migration announced the return of more than 74,000 displaced families to homes in Anbar Province since they were cleared of ISIS militants late last year and early this year, as reported in Al Sumaria News. According to the report, more than 1,700 displaced families have returned to the city of Garma, east of Fallujah, more than 8,800 to Fallujah, more than 43,000 to Ramadi, more than 4,900 to Khalidiya, 23 kilometers east of Ramadi, more than 1,600 to Haditha, more than 1,500 to Rutba, and more than 7,500 to Hit. The Ministry reported on September 21 that the number of returns was 62,000, suggesting 12,000 returns to Anbar Province in the past 26 days.

On October 18, the Ministry of Planning announced that only 18% of Iraqi girls aged 6-15 years are enrolled in school, and the percentage of married girls aged 12-15 increased to 3.5% in 2016, according to data collected by the Central Bureau of Statistics. The spokesman for the ministry, Abd al-Zahra al-Hindawi, attributed the rise in marriage of young girls and their lack of participation in education to “social traditions and customs” in the countryside, however, displacement due to ongoing conflict in the country is undoubtedly a factor as well. The Iraqi education sector suffers from structural challenges that have been exacerbated by displacement. According to data from UNICEF, as previously reported in ISHM, 3.5 million school-aged Iraqi children are missing out on education, which means they are at increased risk of early marriage, child labour, and recruitment into armed groups. Approximately 1 million school-aged children are internally displaced, and 70 per cent of them have lost an entire year of school. UNICEF is particularly concerned for the children displaced in Anbar and along the Mosul corridor due to ongoing fighting.

On October 18, the Governor of Salah ad-Din, Ahmed al-Jabouri, announced the return of 130 displaced families to residential areas in Baiji, 110 kilometers north of Baghdad. Al-Jabouri stated that despite some slow returns, this was the first major instance of IDP returns to the area. Baiji was cleared of ISIS militants in October 2015 but has experienced attempts by ISIS to regain control of some areas resulting in a tenuous security situation. According to al-Jabouri, most of the families were displaced nearby within Anbar Province.

Anbar: On October 19, a member of the Fallujah District Council Khudair Rashid reported that the administrative borders of Amiriyah, 22 kilometers south of Fallujah, is not secure against ISIS militants and IEDs that were left after ISIS was cleared from the Fallujah in June 2016. Rashid asked the federal government and service ministries to act immediately to address the security situation in Fallujah.

On October 19, a member of the District Council of Amiriyah Fallujah, Khudair Rashid, announced that the security situation in Amiriyah Fallujah, 37 kilometers south of Fallujah, remains extremely unstable. Rashid explained that the southern hub of Fallujah is rife with IEDs, car bombs, and other unexploded ordnance left behind by ISIS militants which have yet to be addressed by security forces. Amiriyah Fallujah has already seen the return of some displaced families.

On October 20, the director of Fallujah General Hospital, Sattar al-Dulaimi, stated that the hospital is in extremely poor condition: it lacks the medicine, medical supplies and equipment, and staff needed to serve returnees to the city, and that 40-45% of the hospital’s infrastructure was destroyed by ISIS and conflict between the group and the ISF. The hospital is currently only able to receive emergency cases in the clinic adjacent to the hospital. According to al-Dulaimi, “the volume of support for this hospital is not commensurate with the amount of families returning to the city center.”


Special Operations Command Formed to Assist in Clearing Hawija of ISIS

On October 13, an anonymous security source in the Salah al-Din Province reported that security forces arrested an ISIS leader named Nayef Mahmoud Madhi Ajili with displaced families reentering to Hawija, 55 Kilometers southwest of Kirkuk. Ajili was taken to a detention center for interrogation.

On October 13, an anonymous security source in Kirkuk Province reported that ISIS executed five people by firing squad from the Obeidi tribe for cooperating with security forces and facilitating the escape of families fleeing the conflict in the Riyadh area, 45 kilometers west of Kirkuk. No further information was given about the incident.

On October 14, dozens of demonstrators protested Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi’s arrival to the Kirkuk region demanding he focus on clearing Hawija of so-called Islamic State militants. The protesters held the demonstrations in front of the Kirkuk governorate building where al-Abadi was scheduled to meet with political leaders to discuss the upcoming battle of Mosul. In past weeks, the Iraqi government announced plans to clear Hawija along with Mosul. Hawija is currently under the control of the so-called Islamic State.

On October 14, Iraqi National Security Advisor Faleh al-Fayad reported the formation of a Joint Special Operations Command formed from the East Tigris Operations Command to clear Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) militants from villages in and around Hawija, 55 kilometers west of Ramadi. The Joint Special Operations Command will be led by Major General Ali Fadil Amran.

On October 14, Deputy Commander of Southern Kirkuk Major General Hiwa Abdullah reported that the Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga forces have killed over 500 ISIS militants, liberated over 100 villages, and repelled over 40 ISIS attacks in the area around Kirkuk in the last seven months. Abdullah claimed that the Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga have made it impossible for ISIS militants to successfully attack joint security forces.

On October 16, an anonymous security source in Kirkuk Province reported that ISIS militants and affiliates began planting improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in houses of displaced people and on crossroads and digging tunnels near the village of Alambazl in Hawija to escape security forces when they clear the city. The source claimed that ISIS was responding to Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi’s visit to Kirkuk where he promised the “liberation of Hawija was near.”

On October 16, a Member of Parliament from Kirkuk’s Arab population, Mohammad Tamim, called on the residents of Hawija, 55 kilometers west of Ramadi, to remain in their homes and cooperate with security forces in the upcoming military operations to clear the city of ISIS militants. A similar strategy is being used in Mosul, where civilians are also being asked to stay in the city rather than attempt evacuation. The establishment of a Joint Special Operations Command to to clear ISIS militants from villages in and around Hawija was announced on October 14.

On October 17, an anonymous source in Kirkuk reported that ISIS was forced to unban the use of mobile devices to stop the collapse of its units and organizational structure in the areas of Hawija, 55 kilometers west of Kirkuk; Zab, 85 kilometers west of Kirkuk; Al-Qasad, 47 kilometers west of Kirkuk; Abbasi, 46 kilometers west of Kirkuk; and Rashad, 45 kilometers southwest of Kirkuk. ISIS banned mobile devices since they gained control of the area in June 2014.

On October 17, an anonymous local source in Kirkuk reported that six ISIS militants were killed when they were ambushed by residents of Hawija, 55 kilometers west of Kirkuk, after responding to the residents placing an Iraqi flag on a building. The residents placed an IED near the area and detonated it when the ISIS militants passed the explosive.

On October 17, an anonymous security source reported that 23 ISIS militants were killed by an aerial bombardment targeting an IED factory and a “strike force” of ISIS militants in Hawija. The source claimed the strike was based on accurate intelligence.  

On October 17, media source for a popular mobilization unit (PMU) reported that an ISIS militant gave himself up to PMU forces in the village al Bashir, 30 kilometers south of Kirkuk, in response to appeals for ISIS militants to surrender before security forces begin clearing ISIS militants from Hawija. The PMU claimed that it appealed to families to leave the city from safe passages and asked others to be prepared to provide humanitarian assistance to civilians.

On October 20, Parliamentary Member of Kirkuk Province Khalid Mafraji reported that the military preparations to clear ISIS from Hawija were not finished and stated that the invasion of Mosul took priority. Mafraji claimed that the Joint Special Operations Command created an “elaborate scheme” and that the plan will be executed soon.


Parliament Reconvenes in Baghdad

On October 16, the Iraqi Embassy in London announced it would receive US$ 2.4 million in compensation from the British government for the fraudulent bomb detection devices sold to Iraq. The inventor of the fraudulent device, British billionaire James McCormick was sentenced to ten years in prison in May 2013. The devices were sold to Iraq, Georgia, Niger, as well as the United Nations. Iraq bought 6,000 devices between 2008 and 2010 to be used at security checkpoints across the country and were potentially a factor that allowed the July 3 bombing in the Karada neighborhood of Baghdad that killed over 300 people.

On October 18, Financial Advisor to Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, Mohammed Saleh, announced Iraq received the second installation of a US$ 634 million loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The Iraqi government received the money after it sent clarifications and technical details to the IMF on improving financial management in Iraq. The money is meant to help diversify the Iraqi economy and help with the financial burden of low oil prices. Iraq received the first installation in May 2016. Iraq and the IMF officially concluded talks on the terms of the loan on October 10.

On October 18, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi sent the draft of the 2017 budget to Parliament for a vote. The draft includes the previous agreement with the Kurdistan region on trading oil revenues for the Iraqi government paying oil employees’ salaries. A member of Parliament’s Finance Committee Jabbar al-Abadi noted the delay in sending the budget draft was due to negotiations between Iraq and the IMF regarding the US$ 5.3 billion loan. Talks with the IMF officially concluded on October 10.

On October 18, the Information Office of the Prime Minister announced the Council of Ministers approved the decision to subject all imported goods to customs duties in an attempt to aid the domestic economy and encourage citizens to purchase domestically produced items. The decision came at the request of the Minister of Industry and Minerals.

On October 19, Member of Parliament Abbas al-Bayati announced that Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi plans to put forth the names of three ministerial candidates early next week. Al-Bayati stated that the candidates would be for the Ministers of Interior, Industry and Trade, and Defense. The Minister of Finance candidates are still being negotiated with Kurdish representatives since there is still the question of an appeal regarding the ouster of former Finance Minister and Kurd, Hoshyar Zebari. Al-Bayati noted that political blocs within Parliament are eager to review the candidates and vote on them as soon as possible. Currently the Defense, Finance, Interior, and Trade and Industry Minister positions are vacant. The Defense and Finance Ministers were voted out of office due to corruption charges in late August while the Interior Minister resigned in July after the Karradah bombing that killed more than 300 Iraqis. The Trade and Industry Minister resigned in July at the request of al-Abadi.

On October 19, Parliament held a regular session to vote and discuss multiple laws and topics including the issue of the use of silenced weapons in Iraq and the formation of a joint committee to investigate media outlets reporting corruption within the Oil Ministry. Parliament voted to replace Members of Parliament who skip a “specified period of absence” in order to try and maintain a quorum in Parliament. Parliament also voted to ratify extradition between Iraq and Great Britain. Meanwhile, dozens of pensioners protested in central Baghdad demanding higher salaries.

On October 19, the Electoral Commission confirmed it will send a draft of a spending bill to the Council of Ministers, noting that the draft heavily addresses ways to prevent “vote-buying.” The official spokesman for the Electoral Commission, Miqdad Sharifi, said in a statement to Al-sumaria News that the draft will put mechanisms in place that set the tone for political parties in elections and campaigns to promote transparency. Sharifi continued, noting that the law prevents candidates from potentially buying votes by implementing severe legal sanctions. The draft will now go to the Council of Ministers for review and any amendments before being sent to Parliament for a vote. The Iraqi Electoral Commission, which was set up in 2004, mainly deals with election oversight.

On October 20, Parliament published its agenda for a scheduled session on Saturday, October 22. The agenda includes a vote on a draft on laws of imports and municipalities and a vote on the formation of a committee to investigate media claims of corruption with the Oil Ministry. Parliament also plans to vote on a resolution on the subject of the “genocide” suffered by the Christian Yazidis. The meeting will include a verbal questioning of the Minister of Construction and Housing.


DateLocationDeathsInjuries
10/20/16Nahrawan, South Baghdad28
10/20/16Arab Ejbur, Southwest of Baghdad25
10/20/16al-Bour, North of Baghdad 36
10/20/16Bayaa, Southwest Mosul 18
10/20/16Al-Amitahiyah, Center Basra10
10/19/16Amin, East Baghdad24
10/19/16Radwaniyah, West Baghdad25
10/19/16Hosseinia, North of Baghdad210
10/19/16Rashdiya, North of Baghdad18
10/19/16Ghazaliya, West of Baghdad27
10/18/16Hurriya, North BaghdadUnknown Unknown
10/17/16Yusufiya, South of BaghdadUnknown Unknown
10/16/16Umm ad Dibs, Southwest of Kirkuk 57
10/15/16Jadriyah, Central Baghdad24
10/15/16Hor Rajab, South of Baghdad24
10/15/16Ameria, West Baghdad10
10/15/16Baghdad Al Jadeeda, East Baghdad 27
10/15/16Sha’ab, Northeast Baghdad2738
10/15/16Ishaqi, South of Samarra20
10/15/16Ishaqi, South of Samarra20
10/15/16Sha’ab, Northeast Baghdad918
10/15/16Baghdad Al Jadeeda, East Baghdad 18
10/14/16Al-Za’franiya, Southeast Baghdad18
10/14/16Sadr City, East Baghdad26
10/14/16Hurriya, West Baghdad15
10/14/16Mahmudiyah, South of Baghdad27
10/14/16Ghazaliya, West Baghdad10
10/14/16Nahrawan, Southeast of Baghdad17
10/14/16Yusufiya, South of Baghdad28

 

Please note: some geographic locations represented are approximations and this map may not represent all incidents.


Derived from firsthand accounts and Iraq-based Arabic and Kurdish news sources, the Iraq Security and Humanitarian Monitor is a free publication of the Education for Peace in Iraq Center.


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