While the crimes of ISIS affected many parts of Iraq and Syria since early 2014, there are few places where the suffering was longer or more severe than in Iraq’s Ninewa province.
With ISIS’s genocide against Iraq’s Yazidi community and other atrocities, many internally displaced persons (IDPs) hesitate to return home because of distrust and fear of further violence. The presence of militias, explosive remnants of war (ERW), destroyed homes, lack of basic services, and other factors have also discouraged returns.
In October 2018, EPIC joined a USAID-funded consortium of organizations led by Heartland Alliance International (HAI) to design and carry out “Safe Return”, an innovative 30-month pilot project to support the safe and voluntary return of IDPs who have survived severe human rights abuses to their homes in Ninewa.
To enhance public and stakeholder understanding of the obstacles preventing the return of these IDPs, EPIC created the Ninewa-Iraq Security and Humanitarian Monitor (Ninewa-ISHM), an innovative monthly report that documents security incidents, human rights violations, and other developments in Ninewa to inform IDPs and returnees. Working with young people from Ninewa’s diverse ethnic and religious communities, EPIC will also perform weekly mapping security incidents and threats and work with consortium partners to identify and undertake actions to address security issues with local authorities, civil society organizations, and legal entities.
Through our partnerships and strengthened presence on-the-ground in Iraq, we look forward to learning more about the challenges facing Iraq and identifying needs and gaps where our research, monitoring, field work, and advocacy can make a difference.
Summary: Security incidents during this reporting period included two militant attacks using small arms fire that resulted in the deaths of two civilians, one of whom was a village mukhtar west of Mosul. Meanwhile, the Iraqi security forces (ISF) conducted at least seven security operations that resulted in the arrests of at least 16 suspected militants and the confiscation or destruction of various weapons, explosives and equipment, including a vehicle borne improvised explosive device (VBIED) in the Baaj district. The International Coalition also carried out two airstrikes that resulted in the deaths of at least six militants in Badush
Summary: Security incidents during this reporting period included a multi-rocket attack that targeted the Qayyara military base south of Mosul that did not cause casualties among Iraqi security forces (ISF). There were also two militant attacks with improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in Makhmour and Tal Afar in which five civilians were injured. On the other hand, the ISF conducted seven operations that resulted in the arrest of at least 45 suspects, most of whom on charges of being ISIS members or were suspected of involvement in the rocket attack at Qayyara. The ISF and counterterrorism service also conducted three
Summary: This reporting period recorded at least two airstrikes by the Turkish air force targeting positions belonging to the Sinjar Protection Units (YBS) in the Khan Sor and Bara areas north of Sinjar. The airstrikes on Monday and Tuesday resulted in several casualties. There were also reports last Sunday of clashes between militants thought to be ISIS members and Iraqi security forces (ISF) in al-Qawsiyat region north of Mosul. Meanwhile, there were five reports of ISF operations that resulted in the arrest of 28 suspects wanted for various crimes, some of whom believed to be ISIS members, and the
VOICES FROM NINEWA
Interview with Ido Babasheikh, Former Member of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq Parliament and former adviser to the president of Iraq. This is the second of a series of interviews we had with representatives of various minority communities in Ninewa that will be published in the following weeks. In July, EPIC traveled to Iraq and visited Erbil and Ninewa provinces as part of our work on Safe Return, a USAID project designed to enable the safe and sustainable return of internally displaced persons (IDPs) to their homes in Ninewa. While in Erbil, we had the pleasure of meeting with Mr.
Interview with Yacoob Yaco, the deputy secretary general of the Assyrian Democratic Movement. This is the first of a series of interviews we had with representatives of various minority communities in Ninewa that will be published in the following weeks. In July, EPIC traveled to Iraq and visited Erbil and Ninewa provinces as part of our work on Safe Return, a USAID project designed to enable the safe and sustainable return of internally displaced persons (IDPs) to their homes in Ninewa. While in Erbil, we had the pleasure of meeting with Mr. Yacoob Yaco, the Deputy Secretary General of the