Iraqi army imposes nightly curfew in Kirkuk’s Shwan subdistrict

Kirkuk, 2020 – Peshmerga units during a seeping operation in Shwan subdistrict – photo: Karwan Salehi

KirkukNow - Kirkuk

The Iraqi army has imposed a nightly curfew starting from 24:00 in Kirkuk’s Shwan subdistrict, aiming to improve security and limit armed attacks.

The Shwan subdistrict is located in northwest Kirkuk province, and the Iraqi army is in charge of its security.

The area’s residents were informed about the curfew on 2 January through local officials.

One of the local officials, a village commissioner who wished to remain unnamed, told KirkukNow: “We were informed by the army that after 24:00 movements for civilians will be strictly forbidden, and that it is for the safety of the region.”

According to the official, the curfew is mainly for the rural areas rather than the main roads.

Another curfew was imposed on an area (Shékh Bizén) of Shwan subdistrict a few months ago in order to prevent infiltration by ISIS militants into the region.

It is not necessary at all for residents to go out of their home after 24:00

The mayor of Shwan subdistrict, Bahjat Wahid, told KirkukNow: “We believe the decision by the Iraqi army is a good measure. That force has been deployed here recently; their instructions are different from [those of] the police, and in that, they have a number of objectives.”

According to Wahid, one of the objectives of the measure is prevent attacks like the one that happened in the Shékh Bizén, in which three young men were killed on the night of 17 October 2020. ISIS later claimed the attack.

Another objective of the measure, Wahid says, is to contain the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

“It is not necessary at all for residents to go out of their home after 24:00 and travel between the villages. In case of sudden illnesses or other things, they can inform the security forces beforehand so that they don’t get in trouble when travelling.”

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