Mass Grave Found Near Mosul; 314 Killed Across Iraq

by , November 23, 2014

Heavy fighting between security forces and Islamic State militants over the weekend left 314 dead and 60 wounded. Also dozens of bodies were found in graves.

According to military officers and lawmakers, some of the equipment provided to the Iraqi Army by the United States has already been sold to Islamic State militants. The widespread corruption could be why the U.S. government is considering directly supplying Sunni tribes with weapons.

Heavy fighting killed at least 23 security personnel in Jalawla and Saidiya, but there are also unconfirmed reports that the militants were pushed out of both towns. Many more personnel were wounded, including Shi’ite militiamen, but at least 34 of the wounded were Peshmerga fighters. Fifty militants were estimated killed. A suicide bomber killed seven militiamen and wounded 18 others.

A mass grave containing the bodies of 50 security personnel was uncovered in Badush.

Five people were killed in a car bombing in Yusufiya. Four people were killed in other nearby attacks.

In Baquba, gunmen killed two people and wounded four others.

Kurdish forces are planning an operation to push militants out of the Sinjar region. If successful, the operation will help the Yazidi people still stranded on the Mount Sinjar and restore morale within the Peshmerga forces. It will make it easier for a counter attack on Mosul, the largest city held by Islamic State militants.

In Mosul, a Kurdish official said that 78 members of Defense Minister Khalid al-Obeidi’s family were taken captive by militants. Airstrikes left 45 militants dead.

Security forces around Ramadi killed 150 militants.

Twenty militants were killed in an airstrike in Shirqat.

Fifteen militants were killed in a strike in Hardaniya.

Peshmerga forces were driven from Dibs but not until after killing 12 militants.

A militant cemetery containing 12 bodies was discovered in Jurf al-Sakhar.

An airstrike on Babilan killed eight militants.

In Dujail, security forces killed a sniper.

A number of militants were killed in Baghdad province.

Read more by Margaret Griffis