Mass Graves Found; 89 Killed in Iraq

Jafaar al-Hussaini, spokesman for the Kata’ib Hezbollah, said there is no agreement for the Shi’ite militias to enter Tal Afar. Residents there are predominantly Turkmen, and there is a fear that the Shi’ite militias will seek out revenge on Sunni residents. However, he added that there are two brigades made up of Turkmen, both Shi’ite and Sunni, that could resolve any questions of sectarianism.

Residents of newly liberated Hammam al-Alil are describing the terror they went through in the last days of the Islamic State occupation. Separately, forensic investigators examining a mass grave have found evidence of torture. There are also indications that some of the victims were small children. The team believes the bodies were dumped in the last few weeks.

In recently liberated neighborhoods in Mosul, the residents complain that the “caliphate” was a moneymaking operation shaking down civilians. They also worry that documents, such as marriage and birth certificates, issued during the occupation will not be accepted elsewhere.

Major General Qasem Soleimani, commander of the Iranian Quds Force, is reportedly leading Shi’ite militiamen west of Mosul.

The Saddam neighborhood in Mosul has been recaptured.

At least 34,000 people have been displaced by the assault on Mosul. Many more may wish to escape but cannot. Others are being used as human shields and being forcibly relocated by Islamic State militants.

Militants abducted 195 former security personnel from Tal Afar and another 100 from Mawaly. Thirty sheikhs were taken from Sinjar; eighteen of them may have been executed.

At least 89 people were killed and 32 were wounded in recent violence:

Two mass graves containing 23 victims were discovered in Sharqat. The graves included the bodies of women and children.

In Baghdad, a string of bombings left eight dead and 28 wounded. Gunmen in Sadr City shot dead an employee of the ministry of education.

An I.E.D. in Zour killed a militiaman and wounded two more.

A Peshmerga commander was killed in Bashiqa when he went to arrest two militants hiding in a building. The two militants were also killed.

In Qadisiya, gunmen killed a civilian.

Kurdistan Workers Party (P.K.K.) members in Mount Qandil are accused of torturing a 70-year-old man and his wife for harboring a runaway member of the guerrilla group.

Forty militants were killed during operations in Abu Saif.

Strikes on Mosul left at least 12 militants dead and nine wounded.

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Author: Margaret Griffis

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