Iraq Gov’t and Militants Trade Boasts of Mass Killings; 30 Civilians Also Killed

The Iraqi government and ISIS/DAASH rebels traded claims that they each had killed hundreds of men in the last few days. Independent confirmation of these reports is not available. However, at least 30 civilians were killed, and 89 more were wounded in bombings and artillery fire.

Between fifty and a hundred U.S. military personnel have arrived to help protect the U.S. embassy in Baghdad. Some staff members have been moved to safer areas of Iraq, including Basra and Arbil.

The gathering of Shi’ite men into militia groups to fight against the ISIS/DAASH militants is generating anxiety about how far they will go once the immediate danger is over.

Militants released photographs showing what may be the executions of hundreds of men, who surrendered at Speicher Base near Tikrit. The photos cannot be independently confirmed, but experts say there is no evidence to doubt their authenticity. The analysts have counted about 170 men in the pictures. It is unclear if these men were among the 1,700 that ISIS/DAASH has claimed to have killed.

In Baghdad, a suicide bomber struck in Tahrir Square, where he killed nine people and wounded 23 more. Two people were killed and five more were wounded in a later blast. Three people were killed and seven more were wounded when a bomb exploded inside a Sadr City falafel shop. One gunman was killed.

Militants attacked Tal Afar after Sunni residents accused Shi’ite security forces of firing mortars at residential areas. At least 10 people were killed in it, and another 40 were wounded. Many people were reportedly killed in the fierce fighting that followed. Also, at least 18 militants were killed in during failed attempt to claim the city. As they could, Sunni and Shi’ite families fled Tal Afar in opposite directions. The city is predominantly Turkmen, one of Iraq’s minority groups.

The Iraqi government claims that 279 militants were killed in Salah ad Din province in the last 24 hours. The estimate may be possible, but it is certainly not confirmable at this point.

In Babel province, security forces killed 30 militants.

Mortar fire killed three Peshmerga fighters and wounded 17 more in Saidiya.

A military jet came under attack while flying over Mosul. Thirty militants were killed in an airstrike.

In Muqdadiya, security forces killed 26 militants.

Security forces in Baquba killed 10 militants.

Mortars killed six security personnel in Khalis.

In Falluja, four civilians were killed and 14 more were wounded in shelling.

Peshmerga troops are in control of the border crossing at Rabeaa.

Militants locations in Baiji were bombed.

A clash took place in Ramadi.

Author: Margaret Griffis

Margaret Griffis is a journalist from Miami Beach, Florida and has been covering Iraqi casualties for since 2006.