Kirkuk: Two kidnapped, eight killed and injured in three days

Kirkuk, December 2019: Military operation by Iraqi federal police against Islamic State ISIL remnants south of Kirkuk. KirkukNow

By KirkukNow

Two villagers were kidnapped by unidentified gunmen in the last three days south of Kirkuk while local security officials confirm it was carried out by militants of the Islamic State in Iraq and levant ISIL.

Four members of Iraqi security forces were killed and four injured targeted by Improvised Explosive Device IEDs.

On January 25th, a number of gunmen stormed Dalis, a village of Daquq district, 44 km south of Kirkuk, and kidnapped a villager, a local security high-ranking officer anonymously told KirkukNow, stressed the gunmen where (Daesh) militants.

“His family reported the incident to Daquq counter-crime police but so far no news about him,” the source added.

The incident comes two days after that another villager in the village of Yargun in Daquq was abducted and brought to unknown destiny.

Both kidnapped are farmers, locals said.

Iraqi federal police in charge of security file of the region launched a survey campaign in search of the abducted. Four policemen were injured by IED in Zigaytoun valley amid the search process, the security source said.

A day ahead of the sweep, four Iraqi soldiers were killed by a roadside bomb, one the techniques attributed to ISIL remnants.

The Iraqi security forces has decided on January 25th to comb south of Daquq. Two ISIL militants were killed in the process, security sources told KirkukNow.

In the last tow months, Daquq was one of the most volatile areas where Iraqi forces were hot target for ISIL remnants and sleeper cells lately turned active in the region.

The area is a vast deserted region full of valleys and hills and has never seen stable following the defeat of ISIL in 2017. The Iraqi forces are leading regular sweeps and comp operations to uproot ISIL militants who are still posing a high threat by hit-and-run attacks, kidnappings, IEDs and roadside bombs.

Lately, the attacks by the regrouping militants of ISIL have escalated targeting the Iraqi forces, the Kurdish Peshmerga forces and civilians in the rural areas of Diyala, Kirkuk and Ninewa.

The figures about ISIL attacks by the ministry of Peshmerga MOP under the Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government KRG show they have carried out 2412 attacks in the last four years since 2018.

In nine days, November 27th up to December 5th, 22 Peshmerga members and civilians were killed in the deserted regions between the Peshmerga and the Iraqi military and security forces by attacks of ISIL militants.

Law enforcement operation was launched on October 16th 2017 by former Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, resulted in the return of Iraqi forces to Kirkuk and the rest of the disputed territories between Baghdad and Erbil, including Kirkuk and parts of Diyala, Ninewa and Salahaddin, and the withdrawal of the Peshmerga which controlled it since2003 following the toppling of Saddam Hussein regime.

Currently, Iraqi army, local and federal police, Brigade 61 of Special Forces along with Shiite paramilitary of Popular Mobilization Forces PMF, are under Kirkuk joint operations’ command, an umbrella for the security forces running the security of Kirkuk province. 

Kirkuk, Iraq’s second largest reserves, located 238 kilometers north of Baghdad, is an ethnically mixed province for 1,7 million Kurds, Arabs, and Turkmens. It has long been the center of disputes between Baghdad and the Erbil.

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