Two more villages in northeastern Diyala’s disputed district of Khanaqin have been deserted, bringing their total number since last year to six.
Residents of Shafiq and Jamil Beg villages where dozens of families lived are now totally empty after a surge in attacks by unknown gunmen believed to be Islamic State (IS) group militants.
Osman Manhal, headman of Shafiq village, speaking to KirkukNow, said, “Out of 30 families, 27 of them fled on Sunday, November 3, while the few remaining families left today; eventually the village is now totally evacuated.”
He added that “the increase in armed attacks by terrorists, particularly following the October 16, 2017 events which targeted civilians and security personnel have raise the fears and concerns of villagers.”
Last Thursday, October 31, unknown gunmen wearing military uniforms raided a house in Shafiq village and killed a man and abducted another.
The village is located 13 kilometers west of Khanaqin district.
According to KirkukNow sources Jamil Beg village southwest of Khanaqin has been also completely deserted.
Both villages were inhabited by a mixed make-up of Arabs and Kurds.