Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Security In Iraq Apr 15-21, 2018


April has been different from previous months during the year. Each week the number of security incidents has gone up and down. The two main trends during the third week of April was the ongoing fighting between the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) and Turkey in northern Kurdistan and more attacks upon candidates and political parties before next month’s parliamentary elections.

The first and third weeks of April saw extremely low numbers of security incidents. There were just 40 incidents from April 1-7, one of the lowest figures since 2003, and then from April 15-21 there were 44.

Broken down by province there was 1 incident in Babil, 1 in Basra, 1 in Irbil, 3 in Anbar, 3 in Salahaddin, 4 in Ninewa, 6 in Baghdad, 6 in Kurdistan, 9 in Kirkuk, and 10 in Diyala

Security Incidents In Iraq By Province Apr 15-21, 2018
Babil 1
Basra 1
Irbil 1
Anbar 3
Salahaddin 3
Ninewa 4
Baghdad 6
Kurdistan 6
Kirkuk 9
Diyala 10

Casualties In Iraq By Province Apr 15-21, 2018
Babil 1 (1 Killed)
Basra 1 (1 Wounded)
Baghdad 6 (6 Wounded)
Salahaddin 6 (4 Killed, 2 Wounded)
Irbil 16 (14 Killed, 2 Wounded)
Kirkuk 17 (4 Killed, 13 Wounded)
Ninewa 17 (6 Killed, 11 Wounded)
Anbar 20 (20 Wounded)
Diyala 20 (3 Killed, 17 Wounded)
Kurdistan 31 (31 Killed)

For the week, 63 people were killed all in violent incidents, and another 72 wounded. The dead consisted of 1 Hashd al-Shaabi, 3 members of the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF), 13 PKK members, 14 civilians, and 32 Turkish soldiers. Another 2 Turkish soldiers, 13 ISF, and 57 civilians were injured.

Anbar saw another quiet week. There were just 3 incidents. Two car bombs were destroyed in an air strike in Akashat, and insurgents attacked an army unit in Rutba, both in the west. A grenade was also thrown into a house in Ramadi that left 20 wounded, which accounted for all of the casualties in the province. In Hit, local officials complained there were around 150 Islamic State families who were accused of providing information to the insurgents. The officials said they were a security threat, and they couldn’t be expelled because of human rights groups. Throughout central Iraq there are thousands of IS families that have been largely exiled from their communities and placed in camps and cities and been unable to relocate. They continue to be ostracized as this example showed.

For the seventh week there was little violence in Baghdad. Only 6 incidents were recorded during the 3rd week of April. All were low level such as one shooting and a few IEDs. For most of the year, the capital governorate regularly saw most of the security incidents in the country. The Islamic State has apparently moved onto other areas.

Diyala remained a hotbed of insurgent attacks. There were 10 incidents total. They were all shootings, IEDs and kidnappings. This is one of the main provinces IS is rebuilding in, and the group is active in nearly all the rural areas, which was shown this week with incidents in Khanaqin in the northeast to Muqtadiya in the center to Abu Said in the west.

Kirkuk is another place where IS has become more active. There were 9 incidents. The biggest was a car bomb that hit a Turkmen politician in Kirkuk city that left 1 dead and 11 wounded. This was the first successful vehicle bomb in a month. The New Generation list HQ in the city was also shot at. The Islamic State announced it would attack the election process and took credit for these incidents and others. The group has little chance to disrupt the vote, but the campaigns offer a target of opportunity and a sign that the insurgents are still attacking the Iraqi state. There was also a gun battle with insurgents in the south where a suicide bomber was killed. The two southern districts along with Kirkuk city have been the most violent areas of the province in the last several months.

The battle between Turkey and the PKK continued for another week in northern Kurdistan. There were three Turkish air strikes that left 13 PKK members dead. The Kurdish group retaliated with four attacks that killed 32 Turkish soldiers and left another 2 wounded. For the last year and a half Ankara has picked up its assaults upon the PKK due to its role in Syria and increased influence in Sinjar in western Ninewa. That has led to more bombings and artillery fire across the border and this latest incursion where Turkey advanced roughly 15 km into Kurdistan and reinforced its troops and created new bases. That has led the PKK to attack Turkey’s forces for the first time in years within Iraqi territory. It looks like Turkey will remain in the area for quite some time.

There were very few incidents in Ninewa. A car bomb was discovered and dismantled in Mosul. A group of IS fighters was intercepted attempting to infiltrate from Syria into Rabia resulting in a shootout. Every week small groups of insurgents are caught trying to come over from Syria. That led the Iraqi Air Force to bomb an IS location across the border, which was coordinated with Damascus. Iraqi forces have also fired artillery into Syria. Since the militants still hold territory there more of these incidents are likely to occur.

Human Rights Watch (HRW) reported on a suspicious incident in Mosul. 80 bodies were found in a house. At the end of March into the start of April the bodies were taken away and the house burned down. HRW speculated this might have been done to cover up the extrajudicial killings of Islamic State detainees. During the Battle for Mosul and immediately afterward there were several incidents of the Iraqi forces torturing and summarily executing IS prisoners. The government said it would investigate the matters, but as often happens nothing came of it.

In Salahaddin, IS attacked a police station with a suicide bomber that left 2 police dead and 2 wounded. Otherwise there were just 2 other incidents. This is another area IS is rebuilding in, but violence there has fluctuated from week to week.

Security In Iraq 2017-18
Week
Security
Incidents
Dead
Wounded
JAN 2017
719
1,923
4,374
FEB
628
1,891 + 399
2,511 + 1,634
MAR
720
3,504 + 278
3,302 + 2,925
APR
578
2,933
1,955
MAY
528
2,038
1,563
JUN
534
2,038
1,563
JUL
478
1,490
650
AUG
359
1,949
584
SEP
306
728
549
OCT
286
913
865 + 1,700
NOV
296
1,282
425
DEC
261
763
300
Jan 1-7
71
50
66
Jan 8-14
64
62
70
Jan 15-21
68
156
151
Jan 22-28
68
148
66
Jan 29-31
27
23
22
JAN 2018
298
439
375
Feb 1-7
66
196
67
Feb 8-14
65
63
93
Feb 15-21
59
346
43
Feb 22-28
55
44
72
FEB
245
649
275
Mar 1-7
78
120
84
Mar 8-14
60
84
61
Mar 15-21
67
168
98
Mar 22-28
81
213
61
Mar 29-31
21
26
35
MAR
307
611
339
Apr 1-7
40
174
29
Apr 8-14
64
175
83
Apr 15-21
44
63
72

Violence By Province Apr 15-21, 2018
Province
Violence
Anbar
3 Incidents
20 Wounded
20 Civilians

1 Shooting
1 Grenade
2 Car Bombs Destroyed
Babil
1 Incident
1 Killed
1 Hashd

1 Shooting
Baghdad
6 Incidents
6 Wounded
6 Civilians

1 Shooting
4 IEDs
Basra
1 Incident
1 Wounded
1 Civilian

1 Shooting
Diyala
10 Incidents
3 Killed
1 ISF
2 Civilians
17 Wounded
6 Civilians
11 ISF

2 Shootings
5 IEDs
Irbil
 Incident
14 Killed
14 Turkish Soldiers
2 Wounded
2 Turkish Soldiers

1 Shooting
Kirkuk
9 Incidents
4 Killed
4 Civilians
13 Wounded
13 Civilians

4 Shootings
3 IEDs
1 Car Bomb
1 Suicide Bomber Killed
Kurdistan
6 Incidents
31 Killed
13 PKK
18 Turkish Soldiers

4 Shootings
3 Turkish Air Strikes
Ninewa
4 Incidents
6 Killed
6 Civilians
11 Wounded
11 Civilians

1 Shooting
2 IEDs
1 Car Bomb Dismantled
Salahaddin
3 Incidents
4 Killed
2 Civilians
2 ISF
2 Wounded
2 ISF

1 Shooting
1 Suicide Bomber

SOURCES

AIN, "Destroyed two car bombs west Anbar," 4/15/18

Baghdad Post, “36 ISIS terrorists killed in Iraqi raid in Syria,” 4/22/18

Bas News, "Car Bomb Kills, Wounds Twelve in Kirkuk," 4/15/18
- "IS Attacks the Iraqi Army in Anbar," 4/17/18

Buratha News, "The PKK announces the killing and wounding of 16 Turkish soldiers north Irbil," 4/16/18

Ebraheem, Mohammed, "Hand grenade attack leave 20 civilians wounded in Iraq's Ramadi," Iraqi News, 4/16/18

Al Ghad Press, "The dismantling of a car bomb near the fourth bridge in Mosul," 4/16/18
- "Seven members of the HPG forces and two Turkish soldiers were killed in the Qaindil mountains," 4/21/18

Goran, Baxtiyar, "Four killed, wounded in IS suicide attack in Salahuddin Province," Kurdistan 24, 4/17/18

Human Rights Watch, “Iraq: Officials Dispose of Potential War Crime Evidence,” 4/20/18

Hussein, Rikar, “Islamic State Declares War on Iraq’s General Elections,” Voice of America, 4/20/18

Mostafa, Nehal, "18 Islamic State members killed as Iraqi troops thwart attack on borders with Syria," Iraqi News, 4/20/18
- “Number of Islamic State members’ families on the rise in Anbar as displaced people return back home,” Iraqi News, 4/15/18

NINA, "Turkish Army: 5 Fighters From PKK Neutralized In Northern Iraq," 4/18/18

NRT, "HPG: 11 Turkish Soldiers Killed In Kurdistan Region," 4/20/18

Shafaaq News, "Turkey announces the killing of a senior leader in the Kurdistan Workers Party inside Iraq," 4/15/18

Sotaliraq, "The killing of five Turkish soldiers within the borders of Kurdistan," 4/18/18

Al Sumaria, "Shooting in an election meeting in Kirkuk," 4/21/18
- "Three members of Daesh were killed in clashes with the federal police and the crowd southwest Kirkuk," 4/19/18


No comments: