The Iraqi forces (ISF) have been consistently inconsistent in their announcements about advances against the Islamic State and there were new examples of that in the Mosul battle. First, the War Media Cell said only the southern part of the Zinjali neighborhood in west Mosul was freed by the army’s 9th Division. The commander of the Federal Police claimed the entire area was taken on June 9. The Federal Police were removing explosives and looking for any insurgents that might have been left behind within the neighborhood. There was a new attack upon the Bab al-Sinjar entrance to the Old City district. The ISF have said they’ve been assaulting that area for days now. This raises the questions whether that really happened, whether this was just a new attack, or a new unit joined in. Finally, according to the Federal Police 50% of Shifa was taken. The Iraqi forces have a bad habit of claiming successes before they happen. That’s because of the constant pressure to have daily press releases about victories in the war. That leads to these types of situations where a neighborhood is called freed when it isn’t yet.
There was a meeting of military commanders in Ninewa, which decided that the army’s 15th Division would be responsible for Tal Afar. Yesterday, the army set about freeing towns to the east of Tal Afar. This was a big disappointment for the Hashd who surrounded Tal Afar months ago, and have constantly been pushing Baghdad to allow them to move on the village ever since then. Turkey however complained vociferously from the start and threatened military intervention if that were to occur. It looks like the Abadi government didn’t want any more problems with Ankara.
More IS suspects have been found shot dead and left by the wayside in Ninewa. 11 men were discovered blindfolded and shot south of Mosul outside of Hamam al-Alil. Some accused them of being IS members, others claimed they were innocent. Human Rights Watch has documented several other similar cases. A vigilante group made up of members of the Jabour tribe may be responsible. At the end of May, a group posted on Facebook calling for justice against not only IS members but their families. There was a spate of attacks on families afterwards. This will be a lasting problem in Ninewa. The government has no reconciliation program for the province or the country in general. There are courts to deal with IS suspects, but they are overwhelmed. Even if someone goes through that process and is released, there are others that might think they are guilty and exact their own revenge. IS created such deep divisions, exacted such a heavy toll upon the population that more vigilantism is inevitable.
This is the three year anniversary of the fall of Mosul and northern Iraq to the insurgency. A member of the Ninewa council blamed former Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. He also noted that there were differences between Baghdad and Ninewa and the Ninewa Governor Atheel Nujafi and the Iraqi forces that were contributing factors as well. The collapse of the security forces and the quick advance of the militants was the main reason why Maliki could not secure a third term as premier. Today he is trying to claim that he was the one that saved the country, and blames a conspiracy of the Kurds, Sunnis, the U.S., Turkey, and Gulf states for the 2014 events.
Some families from Mosul were expelled from a displaced camp west of Baghdad for complaining about corruption. 50 families were kicked out by the ISF after they went to the authorities over the camp director. They accused him of stealing food and aid. They ended up getting kicked out as a result.
Australia contributed $1.5 million to the United Nations Development Program in Iraq to help with the humanitarian situation in Ninewa. In total the country has given $3 million in 2017 to aid work in Iraq. The U.N.’s operations have been woefully underfunded for years now. At the start of June for instance, the United Nations High Commissioner For Refugees revealed that only 21% of its $126 million request for aid for displaced in Mosul had been met. The United States was able to form a coalition to provide military support to Iraq against the Islamic State, but on the humanitarian side the international community has not been as interested.
Adhamiyah News, “Military Information Cell: the liberation of the southern part of Zinjili and storming Bab Sinjar,” 6/11/17
Bas News, “Federal officer: freed 50% of the Shifa neighborhood and the killing of a senior security official in Daesh,” 6/11/17
- “Senior commanders in Mosul are looking to start the process of liberating Tal Afar,” 6/11/17
- “UNHCR Needs $126 Million to Meet Critical Needs of Mosul IDPs,” 6/2/17
Ensor, Josie, “Three years after the fall of Mosul, Isil makes a bloody final stand,” 6/11/17
Al-Ghad Press, “After Jawadat announced the full liberation the war media cell announces the liberation of only the southern part of the Zanjili district,” 6/11/17
Human Rights Watch, “Iraq: Dozens Found Handcuffed, Executed in, around Mosul,” 6/4/17
Khabaar, “Federal Police incursion into Shifa,” 6/11/17
Al Mada, “Nineveh Council: Maliki and his corrupt gang are those responsible for the fall of Mosul,” 6/11/17
- “Revenge attacks on Daash families in southern Mosul months after liberation,” 6/11/17
Mostafa, Mohamed, “Iraqi forces invade western Mosul’s Old City: military media,” Iraqi News, 6/11/17
Shafaaq News, “30 dead in a Daash attack south Mosul,” 6/11/17
- “Iraqi forces storm the first area of the old city of Mosul,” 6/11/17
Sotaliraq, “Displaced in Ghazaliya camp: A security force expelled 50 families because they complained about the camp director,” 6/11/17
UN Development Programme, “With destruction in western Mosul some of the worst in the campaign against ISIL, Australia contributes US$1.5 million to stabilization in Iraq,” 6/11/17