22 November 2017
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WASHINGTON –  The top U.S. commander for the fight against the Islamic State group says that the military campaigns in Iraq and Syria have taken 45,000 enemy combatants off the battlefield. Lt. Gen. Sean MacFarland said Wednesday that the number and quality of IS fighters is declining and could be as low as about 15,000. He says it's difficult to determine accurate numbers, but that estimate is lower than the 19,000 to 25,000 fighters that officials cited earlier this year.…
An Iraqi court closed a corruption case brought against Parliament Speaker Salim al-Jabouri by Defence Minister Khaled al-Obeidi, citing lack of evidence, a judiciary spokesman said on Tuesday. In parliament last week, Obeidi accused Jabouri and five other MPs of lobbying for businesses seeking contracts to sell overpriced planes, vehicles and other goods to the armed forces. He said they sought to influence ministry appointments and some tried to blackmail him. All six denied the accusations. The spokesman, Judge Abdul…
1 August 2016 – The United Nations human rights chief today expressed serious concern that Iraq has created a committee to accelerate implementation of death sentences. The committee, announced by Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi, has been mandated to identify procedural or legislative delays in implementation of death sentences passed by Iraq's courts. “Given the weaknesses of the Iraqi justice system, and the current environment in Iraq, I am gravely concerned that innocent people have been and may continue to be…
Human Rights Watch says Shia and Kurdish militia accused of abuse should stay away from battle for key Iraqi city. Iraqi military commanders should prevent militias with records of serious abuse from taking part in a planned offensive on the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant-held city of Mosul, a New-York based rights group has said. The battle for Mosul, ISIL's de facto capital in Iraq and the largest city anywhere in its self-proclaimed caliphate, is expected later this…
Up to 1 million people could be forced to flee their homes in Iraq soon as fighting intensifies in a government offensive to retake Mosul from Islamic State militants, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said on Friday. U.S.-backed Iraqi government forces have stepped up their military campaign against Islamic State in an expected push on Mosul, Iraq's second largest city and the militants' biggest bastion, later this year. "Up to a million more people could be forced…
BAGHDAD – For nearly a decade, anyone driving through one of Baghdad’s many checkpoints was subjected to a search by a soldier pointing a security wand at their vehicle and watching the device intently to see if its antenna moved. If it pointed at the car, it had supposedly detected a possible bomb.The wands were completely bogus. It had been proven years ago, even before 2013 when two British men were convicted in separate trials on fraud charges for selling…
BAGHDAD — A suicide bomber attacked a security check point in northern Baghdad on Sunday, killing at least 14 people, Iraqi officials said. The bomber, who was on foot, detonated his device at one of the busy entrances of the Shiite district of Kadhimiyah, killing at least 10 civilians and four policemen, a police officer said. At least 31 other people were wounded, he added. Three more civilians were killed and 11 wounded in a bomb explosion in an outdoor…
BAGHDAD –  The Iraqi military will use a medieval tactic to keep control of Fallujah after recapturing it from the Islamic State group last month: It is digging a trench around the city. The trench will have a single opening for residents to move in and out of the city, which is virtually empty since the offensive that defeated the IS militants, said Lt. Gen. Abdul-Wahab al-Saadi, deputy commander of the counterterrorism forces that led the successful campaign. It will be about…
The Iraqi government has announced a two-day mandatory official holiday beginning on Wednesday due to a heatwave. A statement issued by the Iraqi cabinet said temperatures were expected to soar above 50C (122F). It is the first heat advisory issued by the Iraqi government this summer. The public holiday will apply to all government workers. High temperatures in summer are common in Iraq, and endemic electricity outages make life harder for Iraqis when temperatures soar. To cope with the heat,…
A total of 1.5 million children in Iraq are displaced internally, living in camps like the one shown in this aerial video. The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), who posted the footage on Tuesday,  say that number equals one in every 10 Iraqi children. The camp shown in the drone video is home to some of the 8,500 people who have fled fighting in Fallujah.   Source: The Telegraph
Anger grows as Baghdad residents accuse Iraqi government of failing to protect them after ISIL attack kills over 20 Anger is growing in Baghdad over the government's failure to protect civilians, after a devastating bombing in a crowded commercial area in the Iraqi capital killed more than 200 people, including many children.  The powerful explosion early on Sunday came near the end of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, when the streets were filled with young people and families out…

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