Friday, July 1, 2016

Security In Iraq, Jun 22-28, 2016


The fourth week of June 2016 saw a dip in violence in Iraq. That is part of the ebb and flow of security in the country. During the week Fallujah was declared completely freed, while operations were continuing in the surrounding areas and the rest of Anbar, along with new ones in Ninewa and Salahaddin.

There were 118 incidents from June 22-28. That was the lowest amount for the month and the year so far. Attacks go up and down every month, so it was nothing new.

Those incidents led to 277 dead and 362 wounded. 3 Sahwa, 44 Hashd, 69 Iraqi Security Forces (ISF), and 161 civilians were killed, and 2 Sahwa, 33 ISF, 63 Hashd, and 264 civilians were injured.

At the start of the week the Iraqi forces were clearing out the northern section of Fallujah, and the entire city was declared freed on June 26. In the aftermath the commander of the operation General Saadi claimed only 10% of the city was damaged, but the Fallujah council said it was 30%. Both figures appeared extremely low as Fallujah had been shelled and bombed everyday for over two years now. When more civilian groups enter the city more numbers may come out.

From the start of the campaign the government claimed that the Hashd would only play a supporting role in securing the perimeter, but would not be allowed inside Fallujah itself. That didn’t happen. A Federal Police unit made up of Badr members was in the middle of the fight. Not only that, but Badr head Haid Ameri and the commander of Badr’s 4th Brigade Abu Hanan al-Kinaani claimed that regular Badr fighters fought alongside Interior Ministry units as well. Agence France Presse reporter W.G. Dunlop photographed plenty of examples of Badr’s presence within the city as they graffitied on walls claiming which neighborhoods they freed. The Hashd also said they were fighting alongside the Federal Police for the Jolan area at the end of the battle. Those Hashd elements continue to be accused of abusing displaced people fleeing the fight.

Those internal refugees are facing a humanitarian disaster. Some 80,000 have been displaced by the Fallujah campaign according to the United Nations. Aid workers complained about shortages of food, water, medicine, sanitation services, and tents. Overall, these groups have been overwhelmed by the mass of people that fled in such a short period. This was due to a number of factors. One was that humanitarian groups did not plan on so many people. For example, only about half as many were displaced from the earlier Ramadi operation. Two there was a lack of funds. The U.N. has been asking for donors to contribute to Iraq for the last two years, and has only gotten a fraction of what it needed. Three there are very few organizations, seven total according to one report, operating in Anbar because of the insecure environment. Four, the Iraqi government has very few resources to commit to this crisis due to poor planning and lack of money due to its budget crisis. Five the authorities have made the situation worse by being slow to authorize the delivery of aid to Fallujah. Six the route from Baghdad to Anbar is full of checkpoints run by the Hashd and ISF, which require bribes to get through and those are complicating the shipment of supplies. Seven Anbaris have been blocked from entering Baghdad due to security concerns that they might be IS supporters. This has gone on for months now showing that the security forces are not interested in screening these people to find out if there truly are infiltrators amongst them. Overall, this means that thousands of people will be stranded in make shift conditions for the foreseeable future. As the Planning Ministry noted, it could take up to six months to just restore basic services in Fallujah.

While Fallujah was liberated, the Iraqi forces were still going through the surrounding towns. Halabesa was declared freed on June 22 and then attacked again on June 27 and freed again on June 28. 

A similar situation was going on outside Ramadi with Zankura and Albu Alwan, and operations in Hit Island and Khalidiya Island starting as well.

Ramadi too is having difficulties. Although the numbers vary at least half of the city was destroyed retaking it. 32,000 housing units in the central section were damaged. Residents have complained that the government has been slow to give them compensation for their losses and are showing favoritism. The mayor of Ramadi said that the committee working on that issue is working as quickly as it can. The major problem is that there is not enough money to give out to people let alone to even start rebuilding. This issue will happen again and again as more territory is liberated from the Islamic State.

Baghdad continued to face mass casualty bombings. A suicide bomber hit a mosque in Abu Ghraib killing 14 and wounding 32. Another three bombers were killed in Nibai before they could carry out their mission. The main killers though continued to be IEDs, 38 total, and sticky bombs, 4. All together 86 people died and 264 were wounded during the week. Incidents were almost evenly spread across the south, 18, north, 15, and east, 14.

Violence In Baghdad, June 22-28, 2016
Center: 2 – 2 IEDs
East: 11 – 1 Kidnapping, 1 Shooting/Robbery, 3 Sticky Bombs, 3 Shootings, 3 IEDs
Outer East: 3 – 3 IEDs
North: 5 – 1 Shooting, 1 Sticky Bomb, 3 IEDs
Outer North: 10 – 1 Shooting, 3 Suicide Bombers Killed, 8 IEDs
South: 9 – 2 Kidnappings, 7 IEDs
Outer South: 9 – 2 Shootings, 7 IEDs
West: 3 – 1 Shooting/Robbery, 2 IEDs
Outer West: 5 – 1 Suicide Bomber, 1 Shooting, 3 IEDs

IS was still carrying out its harassing attacks in Diyala. For example, it fired mortars on Mukhisa, Jalawa and Sadiya, blew up a series of electricity towers delivering energy from Iran, and a suicide bomber was arrested in Baquba. There were only 12 incidents total leading to 9 dead and 4 wounded, but this was an uptick from previous months.

Fighting between the Part of Free Life of Kurdistan (PJAK) and Iran flared up during the week. Iran shelled the border area for several days reportedly killing five civilians one day in Irbil province.

Security in Kirkuk has improved in recent weeks. For a while IS was attacking Peshmerga lines in the governorate, but that has not happened for a month now.

On the other hand, IS continued attacks on the Kurds in Ninewa. It carried out a series of operations on June 27 with suicide bombers and infantry attacks. It also attacked the ISF in Haj Ali. In the Qayara district the bodies of 50 policemen were found in a mass grave executed by the militants.

The government’s forces were carrying out three separate operations in Salahaddin during the week. They freed the government offices in the Makhoul district in the northeast. This area has been fought over for months since Baiji was freed at the end of 2015. That area has also been re-infiltrated by IS forcing the joint forces to clear several towns there. Finally, the ISF was pushing towards Shirqat in the north, the last district in the province under IS control. Is responded with a reported 32 car bombs, 2 of which hit their targets.

From June 22-28 there were three successful car bombs. One blew up a bridge in the Fallujah area in an attempt to block the Iraqi forces pursuing them, while two more hit the ISF in Shirqat killing 8 and wounding 20. The government claimed another 57 destroyed. Those numbers are always inflated so the real figures are unknown.

Violence In Iraq 2015-16
Date
Incidents
Dead
Wounded
JAN
911
2,656
3,032 + 150
FEB
730
2,345
2,366
MAR
820
2,665
2,529
APR
751
2,753
2,621
MAY
674
2,565 + 1,499
1,952 + 646
JUN
708
2,153 + 405
2,174
JUL
688
2,716
3,198 + 4,024
AUG
684
2,440 + 760
1,777
SEP
649
1,731
1,668 + 3,003
OCT
589
1,144
1,555
NOV
530
1,174
1,455 + 124 + 1,322
DEC
553
1,155
1,252 + 5,920
Jan 1-7
150
808
421
Jan 8-14
140
436
417
Jan 15-21
135
275
227
Jan 22-28
132
392
322
Jan 29-31
41
81
334
JAN
598
2,052
1,721
Feb 1-7
146
575
313
Feb 8-14
119
146
323
Feb 15-21
130
225
239
Feb 22-29
153
371
690
FEB
549
1,281
1,566
Mar 1-7
183
321
478
Mar 8-14
168
408
415
Mar 15-21
130
349
409
Mar 22-28
135
213
420
Mar 29-31
49
172
121
MAR
665
1,463
1,843
Apr 1-7
144
239
444
Apr 8-14
141
271
391
Apr 15-21
124
436
242
Apr 22-28
160
413
524
Apr 29-30
30
61
121
APR
599
1,420
1,722
May 1-7
160
325
420
May 8-14
141
311
674
May 15-21
121
349
604
May 22-28
142
200
397
May 29-31
81
115
313
MAY
645
1,300
2,409
Jun 1-7
161
389
487
Jun 8-14
132
234
461
Jun 15-21
148
352
497
Jun 22-28
118
277
362

Security By Province Jun 22-28, 2016
Province
Incidents
Anbar
21 Incidents
97 Killed: 1 ISF, 38 Hashd, 58 Civilians
57 Wounded: 1 Civilian, 4 ISF, 52 Hashd
7 Shootings
2 IEDs
1 Car Bomb
2 Mortars
6 Suicide Bombers Killed
4 Suicide Car Bombs Destroyed
20 Car Bombs Destroyed
Babil
2 Incidents
1 Wounded: 1 Civilian
1 Shooting
1 IED
Baghdad
57 Incidents
86 Killed: 3 Sahwa, 4 Hashd, 6 ISF, 73 Civilians
264 Wounded: 2 Sahwa, 7 ISF, 8 Hashd, 247 Civilians
10 Shootings
38 IEDs
4 Sticky Bombs
1 Suicide Bomber
3 Suicide Bombers Killed
Diyala
12 Incidents
9 Killed: 9 Civilians
4 Wounded: 4 Civilians
4 Shootings
3 IEDs
3 Mortars
1 Suicide Bomber Arrested
Irbil
2 Incidents
10 Wounded: 10 Civilians
1 Grenade
1 Iranian Artillery
Karbala
1 Incident
12 Suicide Bombers Killed
3 Car Bombs Destroyed
Kirkuk
5 Incidents
8 Killed: 8 Civilians
4 Shootings
Ninewa
7 Incidents
51 Killed: 51 ISF
2 Wounded: 2 ISF
5 Shootings
6 Suicide Bombers Killed
Salahaddin
11 Incidents
26 Killed: 2 Hashd, 11 ISF, 13 Civilians
24 Wounded: 1 Civilian, 3 Hashd, 20 ISF
5 Shootings
7 IEDs
2 Car Bombs
30 Car Bombs Destroyed

Car Bombs In Iraq June 2016
Date
Car Bombs
Dead
Wounded
Jun 1
Amiriya Fallujah, Anbar – 1 destroyed


Jun 2



Jun 3
Baghdadi & Saqlawiya, Anbar – 3 destroyed


Jun 4
Kirkuk, Kirkuk – 1 destroyed


Jun 5
Albu Bali & Fallujah, Anbar – 8 destroyed


Jun 6
Fallujah & Yatama, Anbar – 6 destroyed


Jun 7
Karbala, Karbala
Fallujah & Jeraishi, Anbar – 7 destroyed
10
28
Totals
1 – 26 Destroyed
10
28
Jun 8
Nasir, Ninewa – 3 destroyed
Makhoul Mountains, Salahaddin – 1 destroyed


Jun 9
New Baghdad, Baghdad
19
64
Jun 10
Fallujah, Anbar – 1 destroyed


Jun 11
Fahalat & Subhait, Anbar – 2 destroyed


Jun 12
Jeraishi, Anbar – 1 destroyed
Nasir, Ninewa – 2 destroyed


Jun 13
Jeraishi, Anbar – 2 destroyed


Jun 14
Fallujah, Anbar – 11 destroyed


Totals
1 – 23 Destroyed
19
64
Jun 15
Fallujah, Anbar – 1 destroyed


Jun 16
Basateen, Halabesa, Fallujah & Nukhaib, Anbar – 20 destroyed


Jun 17
Shuraidah, Ninewa
Pir Ahmad x 2, Tuz Kharmato, Zanjar x 2, Salahaddin
46
88
Jun 18
Tuz Kharmato, Salahaddin
Beit Ekab, Salahaddin – 2 destroyed
40
14
Jun 19
Albu Risha & Fallujah, Anbar – 8 destroyed


Jun 20
Zankura, Anbar
Zankura, Anbar – 3 destroyed
3
4
Jun 21
Dour, Salahaddin
Fallujah, Anbar – 1 destroyed
North Salahaddin – 1 destroyed
5
35
Totals
9 – 36 Destroyed
94
141
Jun 22
Fallujah, Anbar
Agariya, Fallujah & Zankura, Anbar – 9 destroyed


Jun 23



Jun 24



Jun 25
Haditha, Anbar – 1 destroyed


Jun 26
Shirqat x2, Salahaddin
Shirqat, Salahaddin – 30 destroyed
8
20
Jun 27
Albu Alwan, Barwana, Hit Island, Rutba – 11 destroyed


Jun 28
Amiriya Fallujah & Hit Island, Anbar – 3 destroyed
Karbala Desert, Karbala – 3 destroyed


Totals
3 – 57 Destroyed
8
20

SOURCES

AIN, "Daash blew up Al Azrikh bridge northwest Fallujah," 6/22/16
- "Urgent..the Iraqi flag over the buildings of the village Haj Ali south Sharqat," 6/22/16

Al Arabiya, "Iraqi flag raised in liberated Fallujah neighborhood," 6/25/16

Arango, Tim, “A Tour of Falluja Reveals Grim Remnants of Life Under ISIS,” New York Times, 6/22/16

BBC, "Falluja: Iraq PM Haider al-Abadi hails recapture from IS," 6/26/16

Bulos, Nabih, “Massive exodus of Iraqis from Fallouja overwhelms aid groups,” Los Angeles Times, 6/24/16

Dunlop, W.G., “Despite fears, Iraq militiamen joined battle inside Fallujah,” Agence France Presse, 6/27/16

Face Iraq, "Baghdad Operations Command: four car bombs destroyed and found a jail in central Fallujah," 6/22/16

Al Forat, "Urgent Daash car bombs on Barwana," 6/27/16

Iraqi News, "Anbar Operations announces liberation of village south of Fallujah," 6/22/16
- "Fallujah Council: 30 pc of the city is destroyed during military operations," 6/26/16
- “Forces advance to liberate ISIS’ last bastion in central Fallujah,” 6/25/16
- "Forces kill fifteen ISIS members west of Ramadi," 6/27/16
- "Forces kill five ISIS members west of Ramadi," 6/28/16
- "Iraqi forces recapture Makhoul, advance towards al-Sharqat, Salahuddin," 6/24/16
- "Joint forces liberate two villages in northern Tikrit," 6/25/16
- "Khalidiya liberated, Baghdad to reconnect with Ramadi soon," 6/27/16
- "Security forces foil ISIS attack at Amiriyah Fallujah," 6/28/16
- "Security forces foil ISIS attack south of Mosul," 6/26/16
- "Security forces free al-Mulamin neighborhood in Fallujah," 6/25/16
- "Security forces liberate Zankoura and Halabesa areas, dozens of ISIS members killed," 6/22/16
- "Security forces thwart ISIS attack at Karbala desert," 6/28/16
- "Twenty kms separate joint force from central Sharqat," 6/26/16

Krohn, Jonathan Youssef, Nancy, “They Survived ISIS, Then Disappeared,” Daily Beast, 6/27/16

Al Maalomah, "Arrested a suicide bomber who tried to blow himself up in Baquba," 6/22/16
- "Foiled attempt by three car bombs on Albu Alwan west of Falluja," 6/27/16
- "Freed the village of Albu Shihad south of Fallujah," 6/24/16
- "The killing of four Daash and the destruction of a car bomb north of Haditha," 6/25/16
- "Security forces killed three suicide bombers in Nibai region who were planning attacks inside Baghdad," 6/25/16

Al Mada, “Destruction in Falluajh does not exceed 10% and damage was concentrated in the southern regions,” 6/28/16
- “Red tape and nepotism are hampering the work of the compensation committees in Ramadi,” 6/22/16

New Sabah, “Planning: restoring stability to Fallujah takes six months,” 6/28/16

NINA, "Found a mass grave containing the remains of 50 police south of Mosul," 6/26/16
- "Peshmerga Repel 4 Attacks To Daash And Kill 6 Suicide Bombers, Northwest of Mosul," 6/27/16
- "Popular Mobilization, Federal Police Repel An Attack By Three Car Bombs In West Of Anbar," 6/27/16

Outlook, "Iraq: Attack in West of Baghdad Kills 14, Wounds 32," 6/28/16

Slemrod, Annie, “The failure in Fallujah,” IRIN, 6/28/16

Solomon, Erika, “Iraqi forces make gains on Isis but old ways persist,” Financial Times, 6/23/16

Sotaliraq, "Five civilians injured as a result of Iranian artillery shelling northern Erbil," 6/26/16

Alsumaria, "Electricity: three towards in the Mirsad-Diyala line targeted by improvised explosive devices," 6/23/16

World Bulletin, "Iraqi forces repulse ISIL attack in Anbar," 6/27/16

Xinhua, "Iraqi forces start operation to clear areas near Fallujah from IS militants," 6/27/16

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