Iraqi national lockdown increases 'Daesh insurgent attacks'

two Peshmerga Forces members, on the left and right, killed by “Daesh militants,” the one in the middle, is an Iraqi Federal police member, who was injured in clashes and later abducted by the “same militants.”


 A series of attacks in the last two weeks have targeted the Iraqi Forces in the Disputed Areas since the announcement of the nationwide coronavirus lockdown by the central and regional government as well as the local administration of the provinces. The attacks are said to be carried out by “Islamic State Group (IS) sleep cells.”

The latest attack targeted a Peshmerga brigade in Kulajo sub-district, near Kifri district, late last night at 10:00 p.m., April 7, killing two Peshmerga members.

Commander Kamal Mahmood, brigadier of the Sharazawr Peshmerga unit based in Kulajo, said, “at the beginning, the IS militants started  bombarding us with rockets to make us busy, later they attacked one of our bases from three sides located in Kulajo, especially from the Sirwan river where there is a river and a significant number of orchards.”

Brigadier Mohammed reaffirmed that “they were shot by sniper rifle and Kalashnikov. Two Pesherma martyred, and after an hour of confrontation, they fled”

Hours before this attack, Iraqi Federal Police confronted numerous gunmen in Dibist district, western Kirkuk.

A security source in Dibis told KirkukNow that “IS militants had activities in the district, so Iraqi Federal Police launched a security search that resulted in clashes between the security forces and the Daesh.”


Makhmur, Qarachukh Mountain operation root out IS sleep cells, March 2002. Photo: Iraqi Counter-Terrorism Unit 

In the confrontation, one injured police was taken captive by Daesh militants, who have taken him to a tunnel.

The source confirmed that “the tunnel is not controlled, and the fate of the police members is yet to be known.”

In the class, another two police members were injured.

Within 24 hours, in Daquq, south of Kirkuk, a series of rocket attacks, roadside bomb, and shooting targeted the Iraqi Federal Police, that resulted in the injury of five.

At the same time, at least eight clashes have erupted since the enforcement of the curfew to stop spreading coronavirus, which have killed and wounded 11 members of Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) and Iraqi Security Forces.


Kirkuk, Daquq, the aftermath of a clash that resulted in the death of six people, 2019. Photo: Mohammed Almas 

Haider Ruba’i, the spokesperson of PMF unit one in Kahanqin, said, “it has been a week or two that Daesh activities have increased compared to before, especially in Naft Khana region, south of Khanqin district.

“Daesh aims at targeting security cameras of PMF so that they could move easily,” he said.

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