Jittery Kurdish Peshmerga troops blocked two highways after they detected increased Iraqi troops movements near their front lines. The roadblocks were placed on highways leading from Erbil and Dohuk to Mosul, but they were removed within hours. The Kurdistan Region Security Council also expressed alarm at Iraq troop and Shi’ite militia increases near Kirkuk. Peshmerga forces have increased their own numbers in the Kirkuk area. However, U.S. Special Presidential Envoy Brett McGurk reported that troops from the Hawija operation are now being redeployed to Anbar.
The Iraqi government reiterated its stance on Thursday that it would not enter into talks with Kurdish officials without the promise of Iraqi unity.
The European Commission approved a $71.6 million aid package to Iraq to boost stability after the Islamic State militants are eradicated.
A new investigation of a deadly attack against U.S. troops in Iraq earlier this month was opened in order to determine who was responsible for the attack.
At least six people were killed and 14 were wounded:
In Falahat, an I.E.D. killed a civilian. Eight were wounded in an earlier bombing.
Security forces found tow people near Kirkuk. One was dead, and the other was wounded.
Five more people were reported wounded after yesterday’s bombing in Hit, bringing the totals up to 11 killed and 20 wounded.
In Hawija, three militants were killed.
Security forces killed a militant in Salah ad-Din province.