Safe Return

NINEWA ISHM NO. 4: AUGUST 30 – SEPTEMBER 27, 2019

Key Takeaways:

  • Relative increase in militant attacks compared to August; New tensions because of Brigade 30 presence at checkpoints – The fifty five (55) security incidents in Ninewa recorded by the research team during this reporting period included the following: Thirty six operations by Iraqi security forces (ISF) that resulted in killing or capturing suspected ISIS militants in various locations. Some operations uncovered weapons and destroyed militants hideouts and tunnels. There were also four airstrikes by the International Coalition that also killed a number of militants and destroyed their positions. On the other hand, there were five militant attacks with small arms (compared with four in August) and eight attacks with IEDs (compared to just two in August) that targeted civilians and ISF, along with one attack with mortar fire. In other security developments, the issue of Brigade 30 controlled-checkpoints made news again following a clash between militiamen from the Brigade and the guards of two local officials at a checkpoint leading to Mosul from the east.more…
  • Authorities close more IDP camps; UN opens new office in Ninewa; The Ministry of Immigration distributes grants to help returnees – On September 15, the Ministry of Migration closed the sixth al-Jada’a IDP camp and returned all its former residents to their areas of origin in Anbar and Salah ad-Din provinces, and on September 17, the governor of Ninewa confirmed the government’s desire to close all displacement camps, promising that the return would be voluntary and not compulsory. On September 22, the Ministry of Migration said it had returned 1,326 IDPs from al-Jada’a and Hamam al-Alil camps, south of Mosul, to their areas of residency in various parts of Ninewa. The next day, the Ministry said it had closed four IDP camps: Jada’a #2 and 3, as well as the Mudaraj and Salmiya #3. On September 19, the UN representative in Iraq opened the UNAMI office in Mosul with to “establish a continuing presence in Ninewa province.” On September 24, the Ministry of Migration issued the second payment of the ID 1.5 million stipend for families returning from internal displacements to their areas of origin. Recipients include 8,000 families whose names have been published on the ministry’s website and social media sites. more…
  • Turkey supports the reconstruction of the fourth bridge and UNICEF supports the reconstruction of the al-Nouri mosque; Repairs completed on a number of roads and service facilities – On September 4, a Turkish official announced that the president of Turkey instructed the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA) to support rebuilding the fourth bridge connecting the two sides of Mosul city, a project that requires 18 months to complete. On September 8, the Ministry of Health announced the completion of the clearance of mines and explosives from the Great al-Nuri mosque and al-Hadba minaret in the old city of Mosul, which UNESCO plans to begin rebuilding in 2020. On August 31, the Hamdania police station was rehabilitated with support from the UNDP and the German government. On September 3, the municipality of Hamdania district completed the maintenance and paving of a number of streets in the town of Karemlash. On September 11, work began on paving the Mosul – Kasak road and rebuilding the damaged culverts along the road. On September 11, Ninewa’s water teams re-installed the water pipeline network in the area around al-Nuri Mosque. On September 15, the governor of Ninewa threatened to imprison contractors who are not adhering to project timelines. On September 15, our community-based monitors reported that the Ninewa Roads and Bridges Directorate began to rebuild the al-Hadhar bridge. On September 19, Ninewa municipalities engineers, working with private companies, began to rebuild the Faculty of Medicine building at the University of Mosul, which was destroyed during the ISIS occupation of the city. more…
  • Controversy over the conversion of a number of subdistricts to districts; New Yazidi alliance splinters| News of efforts to dismiss the governor; Koju will become a subdistrict – On September 2, there were news reports that the Mosul district council decided to promote the subdistricts of Hamam al-Alil, Qayyarah and Bashiqa to districts based on requests submitted by these subdistricts. The council also decided to divide the Shura subdistrict into two subdisrticts. The Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) rejected the decision, accusing Shabaki MP, Haneen Al-Qadou, of trying to take away Bashiqa and other areas, which the KDP official described as “Kurdistani” from the Kurdistan region. On September 7, the Yazidi Progress Party announced its withdrawal from the political alliance that a group of Yazidi parties had announced in August. On September 17, a number (disputed) of the members of the Ninewa Provincial Council announced the formation of a new political alliance called “Iraqiya of Ninewa” that seeks to remove the current governor. On September 25, the governor of Ninewa visited the village of Koju in Al-Qahtaniya district (Tel Uzair) and announced that it become a subdistrict. more…

Safe Return is a multi-organization USAID project that is providing support for the safe and voluntary return of internally displaced Iraqis—many from minority communities—to their homes in the Ninewa Plains and Western Ninewa.


Security Developments

Relative increase in militant attacks compared to August; New tensions because of Brigade 30 presence at checkpoints

Note: Above figures represent information collected from Iraqi and international news sources, social media, and our community monitors. They do not necessarily represent all incidents that occurred during this reporting period.

On September 2, unknown militants driving a vehicle without plates opened fire on a civilian near his home in Tal-Afar, killing him instantly.

On September 2, a de-mining team of Army Engineers said it found and defused three Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) at the northern entrance to Qahtaniya, west of Mosul.

On September 3, ISF arrested four individuals suspected of being ISIS members in the neighborhoods of Bab al-Jedida, Ras al-Jada and Hermat in Mosul’s western side.

On September 3, the Falcons Intelligence Cell said its forces killed nine ISIS militants and destroyed their position, which was inside a tunnel in the Sihaji region southwest of Mosul. Aviation assets of the International Coalition supported the operation.

On September 3, a landmine explosion killed a U.S. national working for a Swiss demining foundation. The incident occurred at the village of Tel-Shueir in the Qayyara sub-district south of Mosul.

On September 3, police sources said that a woman was killed with a silenced weapon inside her home. The incident took place in the village of Gohbel in the Sinuni sub-district of Sinjar.

On September 4, the Security Media Cell said that Iraqi Army forces destroyed two hideouts used by ISIS militants in the Tel Kaysom desert region in the Tel-Afar district on Ninewa. The forces also found a car bomb and disposed of it safely.

On September 5, the Security Media Cell said that Iraqi Army and Tribal Mobilization Forces found three car bombs and detonated them under control in the regions of Lake Suneisla and Jabal Manayif west of Mosul.

On September 5, unknown militants wearing military uniforms kidnapped Sheikh Ahmed Hazim of the al-Badran tribe after blocking his car’s path while driving in the Mansour neighborhood south of Mosul.

On September 5, the Ministry of Interior said it arrested a member of the so called “soldiers divan” of ISIS in the Tel-Afar district during the organization’s control of Ninewa. The suspect was arrested in Hay al-Sukar in eastern Mosul.

On September 6, the Interior Ministry said that Ninewa police arrested five individuals suspected of being ISIS members, and another three wanted for threatening civilians. The arrests took place in the neighborhoods of Zahraa, Tahrir, Adan and Arbajiyah in Mosul’s eastern side.

On September 7, an explosion inside a booby trapped house in the Qahtaniya sub-district killed one Iraqi officer and injured a soldier while they were attempting to defuse explosives in the structure.

On September 7, a mortar shell struck a house in the Andalus neighborhood near the presidential palaces in northeast Mosul. The attack injured three members of the family that lives in the house.

On September 8, a force from the Iraqi Army’s 20th division killed a militant inside a hideout in the Malha region of the Jazira southwest of Mosul. A motorcycle and other equipment were also found at the position.

On September 8, International Coalition forces conducted an airstrike that targeted militant positions on the Hawi Aslan island in the Tigris river near the Hamam al-Alil sub-district south of Mosul. The airstrike killed eight militants.

On September 8, ISF arrested a member of ISIS who is believed to have worked for the ISIS “Diwan al-Jund” during ISIS occupation of Mosul.

On September 8, ISF acting on intelligence information found and disposed of three car bombs and other explosives belonging to ISIS militants in the Jazira region southwest of Baaj district.

On September 9, an IED exploded while a group of farmers were passing by in the village of Salahiya near the Hamam al-Alil sub-district. The explosion killed one civilian and injured six others.

On September 11, an intelligence squad with the Iraqi Army’s 15th division arrested a suspected terrorist while attempting to enter Tal-Afar from the eastern side coming from Kirkuk.

On September 12, a statement from the Office of the Ninewa Deputy Governor Serwan Rozbayani said that a force belonging to Brigade 30 of the PMF intercepted his motorcade at the Kokajli checkpoint between Erbil and Mosul and assaulted members of his security detail. A statement by the Ninewa Provincial Council condemned the incident, accusing Brigade 30 of abusing its location to impose illegal taxes on traffic through the highway. The statement added that the actions of Brigade 30 “have caused Ninewa’s displaced persons to lose confidence in the ability to return to their district because of fear of aggression” by the force. Responding to the accusation, a Brigade 30 spokesman claimed that checkpoint personnel had arrested four members of MP Sherwan Dobardiyani’s security detail, who was traveling with Rozbayani, after the latter opened fire on the checkpoint.

On September 13, an IED explosion killed one civilian who was selling produce out of a vehicle, and injured another civilian. The explosion took place in the village of Zalhafa in the Shora sub-district south of Mosul.

On September 14, a military intelligence unit with the Iraqi Army’s 16th division arrested two wanted individuals on terrorism charges at the checkpoint leading into Qayyara south of Mosul.

On September 14, a military intelligence unit with the Iraqi Army’s 16th division found a hideout used by militants in the Khirbat al-Tayr area south of Mosul. The hideout contained mortar rounds and other explosives. ISF personnel disposed of the material by controlled detonation.

On September 15, a military intelligence unit and tribal mobilization fighters discovered two weapons caches that contained large quantities of mortar and RPG rounds in the Farouq and Albu Saif neighborhoods in west Mosul. The ISF personnel safely disposed of the explosives.

On September 15, ISF discovered a weapons cache containing explosives and rockets left by ISIS in the central part of old Mosul. Ninewa police said the cache contained 80 anti-aircraft missiles and large quantities of other explosives, all of which were moved out for disposal elsewhere.

On September 16, medical staff at the al-Salam hospital in east Mosul discovered unexploded remnants of war, including rockets, mortar rounds and small arms and ammunition inside one of the hospital’s halls. ISF arrived to cordon off the site and opened an investigation to confirm the source of the weapons.

On September 16, Ninewa emergency police arrested two members of ISIS in the Bijwaniya village south of Mosul. One of the suspects worked at the Qayyara checkpoint while the other was a fighter during the ISIS occupation of Ninewa.

On September 16, ISF arrested three individuals suspected of being members of the so called “Diwan al-Jund” in the Rajm Hadid neighborhood in west Mosul.

On September 16, the commander of Ninewa Operations said that ISF arrested five suspects in the Hirmat neighborhood in west Mosul, four of whom were believed to be ISIS members while the fifth was wanted in a forgery case.

On September 17, the Ninewa Operations Command said that its forces arrested 14 individuals suspected of being ISIS members inside the Baaj district west of Mosul. ISF confiscated silenced weapons that were found with the detainees, whom were then taken for interrogation.

On September 17, a source in the popular mobilization forces (PMF) said that PMF explosives disposal units dismantled more than 300 IEDs over a two-day period in the village of Barima, near Bashiqa, northeast of Mosul.

On September 18, an IED exploded near a passing civilian vehicle that was carrying members of the tribal mobilization forces in Hatra, south of Mosul. The explosion wounded two of the fighters.

On September 19, police found the dead body of a civilian with marks of gunshot wounds in an abandoned building in Baaj, west of Mosul.

On September 20, a source in Ninewa police said that ISF arrested three members of ISIS, based on intelligence information, in a house in Tal-Afar, west of Mosul.

On September 20, a source in Ninewa police said that ISF arrested two women suspected of being ISIS members in a house in Mosul’s old city. The detainees were taken by police for interrogation.

On September 20, unknown militants broke into the home of the Tel Zalat village Mukhtar in the Yarmouk neighborhood west of Mosul and opened fire on the Mukhtar, killing him. On September 24, ISF said they captured the killer, saying that the murder was criminal in nature and involved robbery.

On September 21, a joint force arrested six ISIS members during search operations in the neighborhoods of 17 Tammouz, 30 Tammouz, Hermat and Hawi al-Kaneesa, by the Tigris in west Mosul. A security source said the detainees were members of “Diwan al-Jund” during the ISIS occupation of Mosul.

On September 21, ISF arrested two ISIS members who worked in the “Hisba” organization during the ISIS occupation of the city. The arrests took place in the neighborhoods of Karama and Intisar in east Mosul.

On September 22, ISF arrested a person named Abu Mujhim al-Juheishi, who’s described as a leading ISIS figure in the Qayyara region south of Mosul.

On September 22, two civilians and two members of the ISF were injured in two IED explosions that happened in quick succession in the village of Benginah in the Qaraj subdistrict near Makhmour, southeast of Mosul.

On September 22, military intelligence from the Iraqi Army’s 14th division arrested a suspected terrorist in the Qara Chogh area near Makhmour, southeast of Mosul.

N September 23, ISF arrested five suspected ISIS members (two with ISIS security and three with Diwan al-Jund) in the Uboor area west of Mosul.

On September 23, ISF destroyed a tunnel used by ISIS in the Albu Saif area in west Mosul. The tunnel contained explosive belts, mortar rounds and ISIS propaganda material.

On September 24, a joint force of Ninewa police and counter-terrorism force arrested two suspected thought to be members of the ISIS “Diwan al-Jund”. The arrests took place in the neighborhoods of Kokajli and Intisar in east Mosul.

On September 24, ISF arrested an ISIS member who was trying to infiltrate the Tal-Afar district arriving among displaced persons returning from the Hamam al-Alil camp.

On September 25, a force from the Iraqi Army’s 15th division killed two terrorists and arrested two more and confiscated a boat they were using in the Hawi Aslan island near Hamam al-Alil south of Mosul.

On September 25, a force from the Iraqi Army’s 14th division found and destroyed four tunnels used by ISIS for hiding and IED storage in the Makmour district southeast of Mosul.

On September 25, ISF found the bodies of two fishermen that showed signs of gunshot wounds to the head and chest. The bodies were found on the Tigris near Hamam al-Alil south of Mosul.

On September 26, military intelligence arrested three suspected terrorists in an ambush in Makmour while they were trying to enter Mosul coming from Erbil.

On September 27, an IED exploded near the Salahiya village in Hamam al-Alil south of Mosul, injuring two civilians.

On September 27, a force from the international coalition to fight ISIS captured a suspect who was described as a leading ISIS figure in the Hamam al-Alil area south of Mosul.


Humanitarian Issues

Authorities close more IDP camps; UN opens new office in Ninewa; The Ministry of Immigration distributes grants to help returnees

On August 31, our community-based monitors that 12 families of the Christian community in Qaraqosh district migrated to an unspecified European country in one day.

On September 2, the Iraqi Observatory for Human Rights announced that the number of missing Iraqis and victims of enforced disappearance in Ninewa, Anbar and Salah ad-Din provinces is approximately 25,000 citizens. According to the Observatory, among those there are about 6,000 from Anbar, and 4,000 from Salah ad-Din, while the rest (12,000 and 15,000) are all from Ninewa. The statement added that only 6,500 families reported about missing relatives, while many families remained silent for financial or security reasons, or because they were not confident of the government’s ability to help them. For his part, the governor of Ninewa, Mansour al-Mureid, asked the Iraqi government to help reveal the fate of 6,000 men women, and children who have been missing since the events of 2014 and their fate is still unknown.

On September 4, the human rights commission in Ninewa province issued a statement detailing the maltreatment and harsh conditions suffered by detainees in the province’s prisons. The commission’s deputy chairman, Ali Mirza al-Jarba said the prisons are overcrowded with detainees who are also suffering from malnutrition and poor hygiene. Al-Jarba added that more than 200 detainees died in custody and authorities had not conducted investigations into the causes of death.

On September 4, police found a mass grave containing the remains of 13 women who were killed by ISIS in al-Shoura subdistrict, south of Mosul. The bodies were handed over to forensic medicine for identification.

On September 8, 120 families from Ninewa returned from displacement camps in al-Qayyarah and Hamam al-Alil to their original areas west of Mosul.

On September 9, authorities found the bodies of two young victims of a ferry that sank in Mosul in March. Forensic medical sources said they handed over the bodies, which were found near the village of Albu Saif, south of Mosul, to the victims’ next of kin.

On September 15, the Ministry of Migration announced that it has closed the al-Jada’a #6 IDP camp and returned all former residents to their areas of origin in Anbar and Salah ad-Din provinces. A ministry official said the Haj Ali camp near al-Qayyarah is also about to be closed, while the authorities will merge the Hamam al-Alil #1 and 2 camps because of the limited number of remaining occupants. Between 12 and 15 September, 920 IDPs residing in the Hamam al-Alil camp moved to their original areas in Kirkuk, Tikrit, al-Jada’a and the Badoush area. Meanwhile, Ninewa Governor, Mansour al-Mureid said the Qayyarah and Haj Ali camps have already been closed. And on September 17, the governor of Ninewa confirmed the government’s desire to close all displacement camps, promising at the same time that the return would be voluntary and not compulsory. And again on September 17, the governor said that among the displaced people returning to their areas, 300 have returned to al-Kairawan subdistrict near Sinjar.

On September 17, the parliamentary committee on migration asked the Ministry of Migration to increase the government’s financial stipend to those returning to their areas of origin to ID 2.5 million.

On September 19, the UN representative in Iraq opened the UNAMI office in Mosul. A UNAMI statement indicated the new office will help UNAMI “establish a continued presence in Ninewa province and … strengthen the mission’s support to communities and local authorities in this period of post-conflict recovery.” Representative Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert also visited the new unified national ID card distribution center, which will be opened by the Directorate of Civil Status in the coming weeks, and will provide services to thousands of people who lost their civil documents during the war with ISIS.

On September 22, the Ministry of Migration announced the return of 1,326 IDPs from al-Jada’a and Hamam al-Alil camps, south of Mosul, to their areas of residency in various parts of Ninewa province. The next day, the ministry announced the closure of four IDP camps in Ninewa province, al-Jada’a #2 and 3, al-Mudaraj, and Salamiya #3. A source in the ministry said that the closure “came after the merger of the families of the second and third camps of al-Jada’a with the first camp as a result of the departure of most of the families that used to live there”. The source added that “the ministry is proceeding with the strategy of returning displaced families that wish to return to their areas of origin, and providing them with return stipends and the necessary assistance and service.”

On September 22, the US Agency for International Development (USAID) announced the allocation of 6.8 million US dollar in new financial assistance to minority communities in northern Iraq that had suffered killings and displacements during the ISIS occupation of their areas. The agency provided the grant to the Catholic Relief Services Foundation, which works in cooperation with the Chaldean Catholic Diocese in Erbil, to help families in critical conditions meet their immediate family needs and facilitate their return to their areas of origin.

On September 22, social media sources reported that the Integrity Commission Investigations Department arrested 34 individuals accused of violating lands belonging to the victims of terrorist operations in Ninewa, particularly in the areas of Qaza Fakhra in east Mosul, on the Mosul-Gwayer road. Authorities have seized 15 vehicles that were used in the violations.

On September 23, civil defense teams found the body of a woman near the Tigris river in the village of Albu Sayf, south of Mosul. The body is believed to belong to one of the victims of the ferry sinking accident in Mosul last March.

On September 24, the Ministry of Migration announced that it has issued the second payment of a ID 1.5 million stipend to be paid out to families returning from internal displacement to their areas of origin. A ministry official said the second payment will benefit 8,000 families whose names have been posted on the ministry’s website and social networking sites. These families will be able to receive the stipend by smart card starting September 24.

On September 25, Yezidi 24 website reported that two Yezidi citizens have returned to Sijar/Shingal district, in western Ninewa, after being liberated from al-Hol refugee camp in Syria. Survivors Faiza Kamal Suleiman and Noura Sheikh Ismail were abducted along with thousands of Yezidi women and children by ISIS in August 2014.


Economy, Reconstruction And Aid

Turkey supports the reconstruction of the fourth bridge and UNICEF supports the reconstruction of the al-Nouri mosque; Repairs completed on a number of roads and service facilities

On August 31, our local sources reported that the Hamdaniya police station was rehabilitated with support from the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the Iraqi government, and with funding from German government through GIZ.

On September 3, our community-based monitors reported that “Triangle Organization” registered farmers in the towns of Bashiqa and Behzani who have duly registered artesian wells in preparation for the supply and installation of solar-powered pumps to serve wells.

On September 3, the municipalities committee in the Hamdaniya district council announced the completion of maintenance and paving of a number of streets of the town of Karemlash, including the main commercial street and a number of secondary streets. The committee said that the work was done in cooperation with Ashour General Contracting Company and under the budget of investment projects of the Ministry of Municipalities and Housing.

On September 4, the Turkish Minister of Culture and Tourism announced that the president of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has instructed the TIKA foundation to take charge of the reconstruction of the fourth bridge linking the two sides of Mosul city Mosul. On September 16, the TIKA program officer said that the reconstruction of the fourth bridge would require 18 months, which could be shortened to just one year if favorable conditions facilitated the work of the executing company.

On September 8, the Ministry of Health and Environment announced the completion of mines and explosives clearance from the site of the Great al-Nuri mosque and the al-Hadba minaret in Mosul. And on September 11, UNESCO announced that work to rebuild al-Nuri mosque will begin in 2020.

On September 11, work began on paving the Mosul – Kasak road and rebuilding the destroyed culverts along the road.

On September 11, provincial water works teams began re-establishing the water network in the area around the Great al-Nuri mosque in the old city in west Mosul.

On September 12, our community-based monitors reported that the Church of Saint George Church and Caritas organization have opened a football court in the town of Tel – Usquf.

On September 15, Ninewa governor, Mansour al-Mureid vowed to jail contractors who are failing to complete their projects on time. During a meeting with a number of contractors carrying out UNDP-supported projects, al-Mureid emphasized that contracting companies executing projects awarded to them must do execute these projects within the specified timeframe and according to the technical specifications established in the signed contract.

On September 15, our community-based monitors reported that the Ninewa Roads and Bridges Directorate began to rebuild the Al-Hadhar bridge with funding from the reconstruction fund.

On September 15, our community-based monitors reported that the SOS Organization and the Alqush University Youth Assembly have opened a library and a public café in the town of Alqush.

On September 15, Ninewa roads and bridges directorate  began the reconstruction of Najafi street in the old city in west Mosul. The following day, the department started the reconstruction of the secondary roads in the Sayegh market in the old city.

On September 19, the committee for the reconstruction of affected areas in Ninewa said that the engineers from Ninewa municipalities, in cooperation with private companies, began rebuilding the Faculty of Medicine at Mosul University building, which was destroyed during the ISIS occupation of the city. Work is expected to be completed in one year.

On September 19, the Ninewa electricity directorate began laying power cables in the Khazraj area of the old city in Mosul.

On September 23, an entertainment and tourism complex was opened in Hamdaniya district, east of Mosul. The complex includes restaurants, yards, children’s playgrounds and cafeterias.

On September 26, our community-based monitors reported that a resident of Urta Kharab in Bashiqa was building a middle school using personal funds. Until now, the village had one school building where both elementary and middle school students attended classes in two (morning and evening) shifts.


Politics And Administration

Controversy over the conversion of a number of subdistricts to districts; New Yazidi alliance splinters; News of efforts to dismiss the governor; Koju will become a subdistrict

On September 2, NRT reported that the Mosul district council decided to transform the subdistricts of Hamam al-Alil, Qayyarah and Bashiqa into districts, based on requests made by these districts. The council also decided to split the subdistrict of al-Shoura in two. The Kurdish Democratic Party (KDP) announced its rejection of the decision and accused the Shabak MP, Haneen Al-Qadou of trying to remove Bashiqa and other areas, described by a KDP official as “Kurdistani”, away from the Kurdistan region of Iraq. The residents of the areas affected by the decision had different reactions, most of which seemed leaning towards rejection, according to our community-based monitors.

On September 3, social media websites reported that the Minister of Education, Qusay al-Suhail, had overturned the decision to choose Ms. Aseel al-Abadi for the post of Education Director of Ninewa because she didn’t have the qualifications required for the post.

On September 7, the Yazidi Progress Party announced its withdrawal from the political alliance that a group of Yazidi parties had announced in August.

On September 8, the mayor of Sinjar, Mahma Khalil, said the central government was failing to intervene and resist pressure from outside forces that are preventing the return of the displaced people to their areas of residence. Khalil claimed there were “U.S., Russian, Turkish, Iranian, and Syrian agendas working to prevent the return of Yazidis to the district of Sinjar.” Khalil criticized the policy of the Iraqi government, which he described as “completely absent from the district, and doesn’t care about minorities or their suffering.”

On September 16, one of Ninewa’s representatives in the Iraqi parliament called on the Iraqi government to change the course of the front lines established during the war with ISIS in southern Ninewa on the grounds that they prevent farmers and herders from operating normally. MP Nayef al-Shammari said that the so-called line of defense, which extends from Baaj to Hatra and until the area of Tal Abta, has become unnecessary after the territorial defeat of ISIS.

On September 17, 23 members of the Ninewa provincial council (in another story, 12 members only) announced the formation of a new political alliance called “Iraqiya of Ninewa” which seeks to remove the current governor, Mansour al-Mureid. According to some reports on social media sites, this movement is led by the former governor of Salah ad-Din (aka Abu Mazin).

On September 20, Ninewa MP Ahmed Madloul al-Jarba called on Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi to intervene to allow 1,642 truckloads of grain to unload at the silos of Tal Afar, al-Wailiya, Makhmour and Bazwaya. The representative claimed that security officers obstructed the delivery of these crops, estimated at 65,000 tons, for more than 50 days.

On September 25, the Director of the Civil Status, Passports, and Residence Department in Ninewa announced the merging of the Nimrod and Adnaniya departments into one department, called Nimrod department.

On September 25, the governor of Ninewa, Mansour al-Mureid, visited the village of Koju in al-Qahtaniya (Tel Uzair) and announced the upgrading of the village into a subdistrict. Koju was one of the hardest-hit areas during the ISIS occupation of Ninewa. ISIS terrorists killed or abducted an estimated two-thirds of the villagers when they attacked Sinjar district, where Koju is located, in August 2014. During the visit, al-Mureid promised the people of Sinjar that the district’s security would be run by the local police themselves.


Officially launched in June 2019, Ninewa-ISHM utilizes information collected from community-based monitors; Iraq-based Arabic, Kurdish, and English news sources; data from aid agencies; and social media posts, verified and fact-checked by EPIC’s research team.


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