Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Security In Iraq, May 15-21, 2018


The third week of May saw another record low in violence. There were only 38 incidents reported, which surpassed the previous low of 40 in the first week of April. Unfortunately, that dip did not mean a decrease in casualties. After a super violent March, it appears that the Islamic State is back to regrouping.

There were just 38 incidents in Iraq from May 15-21. Those were spread across Babil (1), Anbar (2), Kurdistan (2), Diyala (3), Kirkuk (4), Salahaddin (4), Ninewa (6), and Baghdad (16). That was the lowest figure Musings On Iraq recorded since it started tracking security in 2013.

Security Incidents In Iraq By Province May 15-21, 2018
Babil 1
Anbar 2
Kurdistan 2
Diyala 3
Kirkuk 4
Salahaddin 4
Ninewa 6
Baghdad 16

Casualties In Iraq By Province May 15-21, 2018
Diyala 2 (1 Killed, 1 Wounded)
Babil 3 (3 Wounded)
Kirkuk 5 (3 Killed, 2 Wounded)
Salahaddin 6 (5 Killed, 1 Wounded)
Anbar 7 (1 Killed, 6 Wounded)
Ninewa 22 (2 Killed, 20 Wounded)
Kurdistan 34 (29 Killed, 5 Wounded)
Baghdad 61 (17 Killed, 44 Wounded)

The decrease in violence did not translate to fewer casualties. There were 58 dead and 82 wounded for a total of 140 casualties. That was more than the 2nd week of May that saw 117 casualties, the first week of May that had 113. 4 Hashd al-Shaabi, 5 members of the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF), 6 Turkish soldiers, 20 civilians, and 23 members of the Kurdistan Workers party (PKK) died, and another 3 Hashd al-Shaabi, 5 Turkish soldiers, 13 ISF, and 61 civilians were injured.

There were hardly any attacks in Babil, Anbar, Diyala, Kirkuk, and Salahaddin during the week. All saw single digit incidents. There was one attack upon a checkpoint in central Diyala, a sheikh’s house was shot at in Kirkuk, while there was a suicide bomber in central Salahaddin. Diyala, Kirkuk, and Salahaddin are all areas where IS is rebuilding, but violence there has ebbed and flowed week to week.

Turkey continued with its operation against the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK). A Turkish air strike killed 23 PKK, while assaults by the Kurdish group resulted in 6 Turkish soldiers losing their lives, and another 5 being wounded. This is the longest and largest incursion by Ankara into Iraq in years. The Turks are attempting to destroy PKK bases, cut off their routes to southern Turkey and build up their presence in the region by reinforcing their bases and building a series of new ones.

In Ninewa, a Coalition air strike in Qayara was blamed for wounding 13 civilians. Inside Mosul, more and more bodies have been pulled from the rubble of the Old City in the west. This is despite the local government claiming this job was over months ago, and then Ninewa Governor repeating that statement on May 18. Despite that, from May 15-17, 640 bodies were found, followed by 123 more on May 18, and an additional 101 on May 20. Civil Defense workers originally claimed most of them were IS fighters, but then admitted they were almost all civilians, likely family members of the militants killed in the fighting. Since no figures were given about which were which they were not included in the weekly casualty count. The work is heavy and slow, and there is so much rubble still about that heavy machinery cannot be deployed to help. This job will likely continue for weeks if not months more since the destruction is so extensive.

Baghdad resumed its position as the most violent province in Iraq. Even then, there were only 16 incidents, which is next to nothing in such a large metropolis. An IS suicide bomber did hit a funeral in Tarmiya, which is in the outer north, which left 8 dead and 31 wounded, by far the deadliest incident of the week. A Sadrist in New Baghdad was also targeted towards the end of the week, which was probably political in nature. The rest were the usual mix of shootings and IEDs.

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
Apr 22-28
44
62
48
Apr 29-30
12
12
4
APR
204
486
236
May 1-7
51
57
56
May 8-14
56
68
49
May 15-21
38
58
82

Violence By Province May 8-14, 2018
Province
Violence
Anbar
2 Incidents
1 Killed
1 ISF
6 Wounded
6 ISF

1 Shooting
1 IED
Babil
1 Incident
3 Wounded
3 Hashd

1 IED
Baghdad
16 Incidents
17 Killed
1 Hashd
16 Civilians
44 Wounded
3 ISF
41 Civilians

5 Shootings
5 IEDs
1 Sticky Bomb
1 Suicide Bomber
1 Grenade
1 Mortar
Diyala
3 Incidents
1 Killed
1 Civilian
1 Wounded
1 Civilian

1 Shooting
1 IED
Kirkuk
4 Incidents
3 Killed
1 Civilian
2 Hashd
2 Wounded
2 Civilians

2 Shootings
1 IED
1 Sticky Bomb
Kurdistan
2 Incidents
29 Killed
6 Turkish Soldiers
23 PKK
5 Wounded
5 Turkish Soldiers

1 Shooting
1 Turkish Air Strike
Maysan
1 Incident

1 IED
Ninewa
6 Incidents
2 Killed
2 Civilians
20 Wounded
4 ISF
16 Civilians

3 Shootings
2 IEDs
Salahaddin
4 Incidents
5 Killed
1 Hashd
4 ISF
1 Wounded
1 Civilian

1 Shooting
2 IEDs
1 Suicide Bomber

SOURCES

Bas News, "Turkey Claims Killing 23 PKK Fighters," 5/20/18

Buratha News, "The director of New Baghdad district was seriously wounded in an armed attack," 5/20/18

Al Ghad Press, "Security forces repel an armed Daesh attack northeast Diyala," 5/15/18

Goran, Baxtiyar, "Eight killed, 31 wounded in northern Baghdad suicide attack," Kurdistan 24, 5/16/18

Iraq Newspaper, "A Suicide Bomber Kills An Explosive Expert In Dhuluiya And Detonation Of A Land Cruiser From The Popular Crowd In Samarra," 5/21/18

Al Maalomah, “Recovered 101 bodies from old Mosul,” 5/20/18

Mostafa, Nehal, “No more bodies under the rubble in Mosul’s Old City: Governor,” Iraqi News, 5/18/18

NINA, "The martyrdom of two members of the tribal crowd and attack the house of a tribal chief west Kirkuk," 5/15/18

Rudaw, “640 bodies recovered from rubble in Mosul in two days,” 5/17/18

Salim, Mohammad, “Nearly a year since fall of Iraq’s Mosul, hunt for bodies goes on,” Agence France Presse, 5/20/18

Shafaaq News, "Five Turkish soldiers killed within the Kurdistan Region," 5/15/18
- “Hundreds of bodies are still under rubble ten months after Mosul was liberated,” 5/21/18

Al Sumaria, "Security reports 13 civilians injured by mistaken in attack upon Daesh base north Qayara," 5/15/18

Xinhua, “763 bodies retrieved in 3 days in liberated Mosul,” 5/18/18

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