An Update On ISIS Activities

Dear Readers,

 

Our suspension of​​ Daesh Daily​​ operations having continued past our previously estimated time frame, we think we owe you an explanation. As you know, we have distributed​​ Daesh Daily​​ at no cost for about four years, as a​​ public service, with support from various organizations, and also helped by our earnings from other projects. The costs are significant because of the number of personnel required. Our latest funding sources are now themselves on hold, and during the past​​ few weeks we have tried to get new funding, without success to date.​​ 

 

Certainly, we recognize that​​ Daesh Daily​​ is still needed. Many people think that by losing the territory it controlled, Daesh is not a big threat anymore. As our readers know from our​​ coverage, Daesh is not gone and is still fighting hard, and in additional countries. It will find ways and places to grow. As of now, we don’t see a way to resume a daily newsletter to cover these developments, but do hope we can generate enough support to​​ start a weekly version soon.​​ 

 

We thank you for your continuing loyalty over the last few years. When we have more definitive news, we will send out another update.

 

Best to all,

 

Daesh Daily Team

 

 

March 8, 2019

 

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Car Bomb Explosion in Mosul (DD Mar 8)

 

 

 

Important notice to our readers:​​ Daesh Daily is taking a break​​ after this issue.​​ Maybe this is a​​ relatively​​ convenient time in the​​ Iraq/Syria​​ news cycle, but the immediate reason is that our Co-Editors will be traveling for at least the next two weeks. We value your interest and are sure many will miss our daily updates, but take a deep breath. We will be tracking developments​​ and will catch up with you shortly.

 

MAJOR DEVELOPMENTS

 

Iraq

Yazidi horror stories emerge as some are freed. [..]

East Mosul car bomb kills 2,​​ injures 10 near popular restaurant. [..]

KRG ends mandatory withholdings on government salary payments. [..]

 

Turkey

Defense Minister asks Russia to stop Syrian attacks in Idlib, to avert mass exodus. [..]

 

Syria

CENTCOM’s Gen. Votel says there is no time pressure on US withdrawal.​​ [..]

No commitments to date by European allies for US-proposed combined force in Syria [..]

UNOCHA says overwhelmed Al-Hawl camp now has 62,000 people—90% women & children [..]

. . . and 3,000 more arrived on Thursday.​​ [..]

SDF lets 1,050 more out of Al-Baghouz, then resumes military attack. [..]

 

REPORTS FROM IRAQ

 

NATIONAL NEWS

Council of Representatives

Mohammed Al-Ogaily, a CoR MP from Nouri Al-Maliki’s Rule of Law bloc, says that Iraq is unable to contain the large numbers of terrorists handed over for trial in Iraq. He called for more cooperation and coordination between the federal government and the KRG to contain the “fragile” security situation. [Rudaw]

 

Anti-Daesh campaign

A military source in Anbar said that Iraq received the last group of Daesh prisoners from the SDF under the supervision of the Coalition. The source said that they are being kept in a detention center in Al-Qa’im. [Baghdadia]​​ 

 

A report by​​ Al-Baghdadia​​ pondered whether Daesh is returning to Iraq, following a Daesh operation that killed 6 fishermen from Najaf in Haditha, and an armed attack that was thwarted by the IFP in Shirqat, as well as the kidnapping operations targeting mushroom hunters in the Anbar desert. Faleh Al-Fayadh, the National Security Advisor, warned of a “new generation” of Daesh that is currently underground, which he said will pose a threat to the whole world, although he noted that the social environment in Iraq is no longer conducive to Daesh thought. Sean Ryan, the Coalition spokesman, said that Daesh is present in very small groups, but still can pose a threat. Reports​​ have​​ said that about 1,000 Daesh fighters entered Iraq within the past 6 months, mainly from Syria. [Baghdadia]​​ 

 

President Barham Salih, speaking to the Emirati newspaper​​ The National, said that foreign Daesh fighters tried in Iraq could be given death sentences. Salih said that Daesh fighters would be tried in accordance with Iraqi law, which includes the possibility of death penalties for those found guilty of killing Iraqis. [Reuters]

 

Yazidi returnees

Yazidi children still have bad memories of Daesh captivity, saying they were forced to attend Quranic​​ and other religious​​ lessons, and that they were constantly on the move during the advance of the SDF forces in Al-Baghouz. 1 Yazidi girl said that Muslims were well-treated, but that non-Muslim girls and women worked as maids and were humiliated. 21 Yazidi children, both boys and girls, recently returned to their families in Sinjar after being freed from Daesh captivity. [Rudaw]​​ 

 

A 20-year-old Yazidi women who reached the SDF-held areas in Al-Baghouz said that during her captivity she was forced to put on a veil and was sold to 10 different men. Many Yazidi women and children are still missing after being kidnapped by Daesh. [Rudaw]​​ 

 

Joint Ops Command said that the 15th​​ Army Division secured the return of 9 Yazidi children and 1 Yazidi woman to their families in Sinjar. The hostages were freed in Syria by the SDF. [BasNews]​​ 

 

Foreign policy

In an appropriately timed statement given the stories just above, the UN​​ honored​​ the occasion of International Women’s Day (March 8). It said​​ that the Iraqi and Kurdistan governments have taken major steps​​ to support the rights of women, but that more should be done to involve women in policy-making. The statement added that changes were needed to recover from the conflicts of the past 3 years. [BasNews]

 

BAGHDAD

North​​ (Tarmiya, Taji, etc.)​​ 

Daesh said it killed five soldiers on Thursday when it attacked an Iraqi Army position in the Abayachi area, in Tarmiya​​ District, with medium weapons. [ICDNMar8-Telegram]

 

ANBAR

Hit/Haditha

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Thursday that 2 Iraqi Army 7th​​ Division soldiers were killed while stopping a Daesh attack on a military position near the Kubaisa Irrigation Project. The source said the Division killed 2 terrorists and forced the rest to flee.

 

SALAHUDDIN

Southern Salahuddin​​ (Balad,​​ Dujail)

Daesh said it killed a PMF fighter and wounded another on Thursday when it attacked a military position in the Farahatiya area, in Ishaqi subdistrict, with medium weapons. [ICDNMar8-Telegram]

 

Eastern Salahuddin (Al-Daur)

Daesh said it wounded IFP policemen and damaged their vehicle with an IED on Thursday in the Jalam Al-Daur area in Al-Daur District. [ICDNMar8-Telegram]​​ 

 

DIYALA

Baquba/Southeast Diyala

Daesh said its snipers killed an Iraqi soldier on Thursday in Yousef Al-Hailan village, in​​ the​​ Buhriz subdistrict​​ of Baquba. [ICDNMar8-Telegram]​​ 

 

Northern Diyala (Khanaqin)

The PMF media office said that the 23rd​​ PMF Brigade in Diyala attacked​​ Daesh in​​ the​​ orchards of​​ Ibrahim Bek and Mubarak in Khanaqin, destroying 2 Daesh safehouses and killing 1 Daesh fighter. Light and medium weapons were confiscated in the operation. [Buratha]​​ 

 

KIRKUK

Kirkuk/Dibis

A security source said on Friday that an IED had targeted the house of a colonel and planning officer in the Khazra’ neighborhood of Kirkuk city.​​ [Sumaria]

Hawija (Riyadh,​​ Al-Zab,​​ etc.)

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Friday that IFP units raided Al-Hilwat,​​ Al-Tarqiya, and Shmet,​​ in the​​ Al-Zab subdistrict,​​ and arrested 11 Daesh suspects. The source said all the arrestees had arrest warrants on terrorism charges from Kirkuk courts. ​​ 

 

NINEWA

Makhmur

In a follow-up to yesterday’s major road attack,​​ Daesh said it killed 11 fighters, including commanders, wounded 34 others, and set their vehicles on fire on Wednesday when it ambushed 4 vehicles carrying PMF fighters on the road between Qaraj and Makhmur, near Makhmur Mountain. Daesh said the clashes lasted for several hours. [ICDNMar8-Telegram]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ If true, then it is unclear why Iraqi aircrafts were not deployed. And for the anti-Coalition loudmouths​​ who disdain its air support, wouldn’t Coalition planes save lives when such attacks happen?​​ 

On another point, it is not to our surprise that this incident occurred in Makhmur, notwithstanding two statements yesterday that put the incident in Kirkuk Province.​​ We won’t be surprised if the next allegation is that the incident reflects a lack of coordination between the Iraqi Army and the Peshmerga in Makhmur.​​ 

The Security Media Center had said​​ yesterday​​ that Daesh ambushed unarmed Turkmen PMF soldiers who were returning from leave on the Mosul–Tuz road near Makhmur, killing 6 and wounding 31 others. [Sumaria] [Sumaria]

 

Nineveh Plain (Hamdaniya)

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Friday that Ninewa SWAT units found a weapons and explosives cache in Khaznah village, in the Bartella subdistrict of Hamdaniya.​​ 

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Friday that an Iraqi Army 1st​​ lieutenant was wounded when a sticky IED exploded under his vehicle in the Kokjali area, at the entrance to east Mosul.​​ 

 

Mosul​​ city

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Friday that 2 civilians, including a 12-year-old girl, were killed and 6 others wounded when a parked car bomb exploded near a restaurant in Al-Muthanna neighborhood, in east Mosul. The source said that security experts believe that the vehicle was rigged with explosives in a nearby area.​​ 

The Security Media Center​​ later​​ reported a vehicle bomb explosion​​ in the​​ Al-Muthanna neighborhood. [Sumaria]​​ A​​ security source said that the explosion took place near the restaurant “Spicy.​​ [Forat]​​ Forat​​ published photos of the explosion. [Forat]

A security source said that the bombing had killed 1 woman and injured 6 other people. [Sumaria]​​ The Ninewa Health Director confirmed in a statement that 1 person had been killed and 6 injured in the bombing. The statement said that the person killed was a 13-year-old girl.​​ [Forat]

The Security Media Center reported later on Friday that the car bomb explosion on the east side of Mosul city killed​​ 2 people, including a 13-year-old girl,​​ and injured 10. [Rudaw]

 

Western​​ Ninewa

Tal Afar

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Wednesday that Military Intelligence Service units captured a Daesh commander in an ambush near Abu Mariya hills,​​ just​​ west of Tal Afar. The source said the terrorist was transporting RPG rockets and ammunition in his vehicle to terrorists hiding​​ in the hills.​​ 

 

Southern Ninewa

Hatra

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Wednesday that PMF EOD units defused 2 IEDs that were planted on a bridge near Hatra.​​ 

 

Daesh said it wounded tribal PMF “intelligence members” and damaged their vehicle with an IED on Wednesday in the Jazeera Hatra area. [ICDNMar8-Telegram]

 

KURDISTAN​​ NEWS

ERBIL

The President of Iraqi Kurdistan, Nechirvan Barzani, said on Friday that starting in March 2019, the mandatory savings program, in which part of employees’ salaries are withheld, would be canceled for government employees. The Kurdistan Region has been employing a mandatory savings program for the past year due to financial problems after​​ the CoR​​ reduced its share of the federal budget. [Anadolu]

 

REPORTS FROM TURKEY​​ 

 

Military & security developments

Turkish security sources said that police arrested 3 Daesh suspects in​​ Şanlıurfa (aka Urfa),​​ southern Turkey.​​ 1​​ arrestee is a UAE national,​​ another is Syrian,​​ and​​ the nationality of the third was not revealed. [Ghad]​​ 

 

Foreign policy

Hulusi Akar, the Turkish Defense Minister, called on Russia to stop the Syrian government’s attacks on Idlib, warning that if the attacks continue, as many as 3.5 million refugees may head to Europe and the US. [ElDorar] [EnabBaladi]

 

REPORTS FROM SYRIA

 

NATIONAL NEWS

Iran

According to​​ IRNA, the head of​​ the​​ National Security and Foreign Policy Committee of Iran’s Shura Council,​​ Hishmatullah Fallah Bishah, said that the Syrian​​ government​​ owed Iran debts for its military and economic support over the past few years. [ElDorar]

 

Foreign policy

United States

US CENTCOM Commander General Joseph Votel said that the US feels no time pressure regarding withdrawing its troops from Syria, adding that defeat of Daesh and safe withdrawal are the factors controlling the withdrawal process. There is no specific timetable for the process, he said. [ElDorar]

General Votel also said that European allies are essential to the US effort in Syria. Speaking before the US House Armed Services Committee, he said that the US is pressing 8 European allies, among others, to take part in the re-stabilization of Syria. The US is planning to prevent the reemergence of Daesh in areas liberated by the SDF, and to avoid​​ a​​ possible Turkish-Kurdish collision. [Hawar]

 

The​​ Wall Street Journal​​ wrote that​​ US administration officials had failed to secure commitments from their European allies to send military forces to Syria, missing their self-determined Friday deadline. US officials said that they would continue to press for involvement from their allies to keep Daesh from re-emerging in Syria. [WSJ]

 

Great Britain

The British Ministry of Defense said on Friday that over the past 4.5 years and 1,700 Royal Air Force airstrikes in Iraq and Syria, only 1 civilian was killed. The executive director of the group Action on Armed Violence said that “few conflict experts” believed the figure,​​ and that the UK must be more transparent regarding civilian casualties from airstrikes. [Rudaw] [Telegraph]

 

Northwest

Afrin

The Kurdish militia “Afrin Liberation Forces”​​ said​​ that​​ it had carried out​​ an​​ operation against the Turkish​​ Army,​​ resulting​​ in the killing of​​ 1​​ Turkish soldier and​​ the wounding​​ of​​ 2​​ pro-Turkey militia fighters​​ in Afrin. [Hawar]

 

Northeast​​ 

Hasaka

UNOCHA said that Al-Hawl camp in Hasaka is now hosting over 62,000 refugees and IDPs. 5,200 of whom reached the camp between March 5 and 7. 90% of the newcomers are women and children. [EnabBaladi]

 

On Friday, Stéphane Dujarric, the spokesman for the UN Secretary-General, expressed serious concerns over the safe arrival of thousands of IDPs into Al-Hawl refugee camp in Hasaka. He said that more than 3,000 people, mostly women and children, arrived in Al-Hawl on Thursday night, and that Al-Hawl residents now add up to about 65,000 people. He added that about 100 people had died either on their way to Al-Hawl or shortly after their arrival since the beginning of December 2018. [Anadolu]

 

A news source said that the SDF arrested “many” individuals on charges of belonging to Daesh inside Al-Hawl camp. This occurred after a demonstration inside the camp about poor services and neglect of health conditions. Previous statistics by the UN showed that the SDF’s neglect of the camp resulted in the deaths of about 80 people, mostly children. [ElDorar]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ The SDF is not a government, and does not have international responsibilities for conditions in IDP camps they don’t run. The Al-Hawl camp was already troubled and is now overwhelmed by all the escapees and Daesh family members coming out of Deir Ez-Zor. This could have been predicted and planned for, including by the UN. Let’s not shift the blame.

 

Said Jayashi, a security expert, said that coordination efforts are underway to receive Daesh families of Iraqi nationality from the Al-Hawl camp in Syria. He said the camp hosts a large number of both Daesh-affiliated and non-Daesh Iraqi refugees, and that exact information on numbers and nationalities is still unavailable. [Rudaw]​​ 

 

Central and West​​ 

No reports

 

East (Deir Ez-Zor)

Albu Kamal​​ District

The SDF resumed military operations in Al-Baghouz after more 1,050 people, including 90 Daesh fighters, left Daesh-held areas and headed for SDF positions during the past 24 hours. 18,530 people total have now exited Daesh-held areas since February 16. [SyriaHR]

SDF spokesman Mustafa Bali​​ had​​ said that the SDF would​​ resume its attack on​​ Al-Baghouz if no more civilians or armed men come out of the Daesh-held area. He said that the attack was slowed to allow as many civilians and fighters​​ as possible​​ who wish to surrender to leave the area. [BasNews]

 

Kurdish intelligence and SDF units are continuing to sort​​ out​​ thousands of Daesh arrestees in Al-Baghouz, many of whom claim that they came to the area for business or trade. At least 1 Daesh official called “Abu Yousef Al-Maghrebi” (Abu Yousef the Moroccan) was arrested after fleeing Al-Baghouz on February 16. [SyriaHR]

 

South​​ 

No reports

 

OTHER MIDDLE EAST/NORTH AFRICA REPORTS

 

North Africa

Libya

The Military Engineering Corps found a cache of munitions and explosive materiel in the Al-Arba’in area, 40 km​​ (25 miles)​​ west of Ajdabiya, northeastern Libya. [AfriGate]

 

REPORTS FROM OTHER COUNTRIES

 

EUROPE

Belgium

The​​ Belgian judiciary declined to try 30 persons and foundations accused of being affiliated​​ with the​​ PKK, saying that the Belgian courts did not have jurisdiction to try them under counter-terrorism laws,​​ despite the fact that​​ the​​ PKK is classified in Belgium as a terrorist group. The​​ Belgian federal prosecutor said that​​ the case should be​​ heard​​ by a court responsible for​​ international humanitarian law.​​ A spokesman for the Belgian Foreign Ministry said that the court decision was independent of the classification of the PKK as a terrorist group, and that Belgium would not change that designation.​​ [Anadolu]

 

Sweden

A Swedish court found David Idrisson, an Uzbek national, guilty of plotting a terrorist attack on behalf of Daesh. The court said that Idrisson had gathered approximately 500 kg of chemicals, gas masks, and military equipment, and that photos of “potential targets” in Stockholm were on his cellphone. Idrisson had been living legally in Sweden since 2008. [AP]

 

ASIA

Afghanistan

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said on Thursday that the NATO in Afghanistan​​ is there to​​ create the conditions for peace” and to “send a clear message to the Taliban that they will not win on the battlefield, but have to sit down at the negotiating table and reach a political agreement.” He made the remarks during a press conference with the President of Poland.​​ [Khaama]

 

Daesh said on Friday it shot and killed an Afghan intelligence​​ officer​​ in Khost city. [ICDNMar8-Telegram]

 

Daesh published on Friday a photo of the 2 terrorists, in masks, who conducted an attack on a Shia​​ gathering in Kabul on Thursday. [ICDNMar8-Telegram]

 

 

*****

 

READER COMMENTS WELCOME

You are invited to add information to or comment on any Daesh Daily story​​ 

 

March 7, 2019

 

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Iraqi Children Freed from Daesh in Al-Baghouz (Bas​​ News March 6)

 

 

 

MAJOR DEVELOPMENTS

 

Iraq

President Salih wants more international help to handle IDP problem. [..]

Yazidi human rights group wants Iraq to use detainee interviews for intel on missing Yazidis. [..]

Major Daesh attack between Makhmur & Kirkuk kills at least 6 PMFs, wounds 39,​​ with many others​​ missing.​​ [..]

Human Rights Commission reveals the grim toll: 4,720 bodies recovered so far from Mosul. [..]

KRG official slams Human Rights Watch child-torture allegations. [..]

 

Syria

US pressing European allies for Coalition stabilization plan for NE Syria.​​ [..]

Assassination attempt on pro-Coalition militia leader near Al-Tanaf leaves him wounded but alive. [..]

3,000 more Daesh fighters & families surrender to SDF in Al-Baghouz. [..]

Total Deir Ez-Zor evacuees now over 17,000 in last 3 weeks.​​ [..]

15 more Yazidis freed in Al-Baghouz.​​ [..]

 

Other​​ countries

Saudi Arabia: ​​​​ UN Human Rights Council slams Saudis for mistreating women activists. [..]

Afghanistan: ​​ ​​​​ Militants attack Kabul​​ celebration attended by major Afghan leaders; 3 killed.​​ [..]

India/Kashmir: ​​ Indian jihadi throws grenade in a bus station; kills 1, wounds 32. [..]

 

REPORTS FROM IRAQ

 

NATIONAL NEWS

Anti-Daesh campaign

Iraqi​​ President Barham Salih, saying​​ that Iraq has fought terrorism on the world’s behalf, requested more international support to handle the IDP problem. He said that the victory against Daesh was Iraqi-made, and was not easy. He​​ said that the Iraqi government and the Syrian government cooperated in military and security aspects regarding the Daesh threat.​​ 

He added that an agreement was reached with France to try French terrorists in Iraq if they committed crimes inside Iraq.​​ He was speaking to the​​ Saudi TV channel​​ Al-Hadath.​​ [IraqPress]​​ [ElDorar]

 

On Thursday, a Yazidi human rights organization, the Roja Shingal Organization for Human Rights, called on the Iraqi government not to surrender Daesh members from Syria to foreign states until they undergo​​ a DNA test to prove their nationality and identity, and after thorough investigations to achieve justice and uncover the fate of the thousands of Yazidis remaining with Daesh. [BasNews]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ This raises a good idea. The next few months may be the last chance to recover a significant number of the women and children abducted in 2014. A lot of Daesh members are in custody and virtually all will be subjected to questioning. Asking what they know, and did, in​​ relation to captured Yazidis should be added to the usual questions. The same questions should be asked of all the Daesh women who have arrived at the Al-Hawl camp and other places of refuge. Some of​​ them​​ have answers too.​​ “I don’t know anything” answers should be treated with skepticism. Aside from the investigative initiative, Roja Shingal seems to be betting that DNA tests will identify Daesh children with Yazidi mothers.

 

Iraq Press​​ published a follow-up video on 4 children who had been abducted by Daesh from Tal Afar and subsequently freed by the SDF. [IraqPress]

 

The Ninewa Criminal Court sentenced a Daesh convict to death on Thursday. The convict was active in Daesh’s “security squads” in Shirqat. [Sumaria]​​ 

 

BAGHDAD

South​​ (Dora, Yusufiyah, Mahmudiya, etc.)

Baghdad​​ Ops​​ Command​​ said that the​​ 17th​​ Army​​ Division arrested a terrorism​​ suspect in​​ southern Baghdad, while​​ the​​ 6th​​ Army​​ Division​​ and ​​​​ 2nd​​ and 3rd​​ IFP​​ Divisions arrested 15​​ other suspects​​ on theft, attempted murder,​​ and drug charges in various parts of Baghdad. [Ghad]​​ 

 

ANBAR

Iraq designated large areas of the Anbar desert as “military zones” following​​ reports​​ of Daesh fighters entering these areas.​​ The​​ Iraqi​​ Armed​​ Forces called​​ on​​ shepherds, Bedouins, and​​ truffle gatherers,​​ among others,​​ to leave​​ these​​ areas until further notice. Iraqi and​​ Coalition planes​​ carried​​ out​​ airstrikes on targets near Kubaisa,​​ and​​ continue to​​ monitor​​ the area.​​ A​​ widescale​​ land operation by Iraqi forces to clear the desert of Daesh​​ elements​​ was also announced.​​ [Sumaria]​​ 

 

Ramadi

A security source in Anbar says 300 hand grenades, in addition to detonators and other explosive materials, were recovered from​​ the​​ Habbaniya Lake​​ area. The source described the materials as Daesh war detritus. [BasNews]

 

Anah​​ (including Rawa)

A security source in Anbar said that an IED exploded in the Anah desert, killing 1 truffle harvester and wounding 2 others. [BasNews]

 

SALAHUDDIN

Samarra

Samarra Ops Command said that army helicopters attacked Daesh positions near​​ Al-‘Uwrah and​​ Al-Kosh​​ (spelling approx.) in​​ northeastern​​ Samarra,​​ destroying a vehicle and killing 3​​ fighters. [Ghad]​​ 

 

DIYALA

Sadiq Al-Husseini, of the Security Committee for the Diyala Provincial Council, says that Diyala security personnel​​ have​​ arrested many so-called ”Daesh look-alikes,” who are​​ actually​​ crooks extorting people by claiming they are members of Daesh, but​​ are​​ not​​ Daesh​​ members. [Buratha]​​ 

 

KIRKUK

The Security Media Center said that Daesh ambushed unarmed Turkmen PMF soldiers who were returning from leave on the MosulTuz road near Makhmur, killing 6 and wounding 31 others. [Sumaria] [Sumaria]

Peshmerga leaders said on Thursday that the Iraqi Army requested its support on Wednesday night after Daesh launched an attack on PMF forces. A Peshmerga leader from Makhmur said that Daesh attacked a​​ PMF​​ vehicle convoy, first killing the drivers and then killing 4 other PMF members. 39 others were injured in the attack. He said other PMF fighters were also missing, with their fates unknown. Another Iraqi security leader said that between 70 to 100 PMF members were missing, killed, or injured in the attack. The source said that the attack occurred in west Kirkuk. [BasNews]

A statement from the 15th​​ PMF Brigade, who were attacked in the incident, said that the attack took place in Kirkuk Province.​​ [PressIraq]​​ 

Forat​​ wrote that security personnel and Army Air carried out a “large” operation on Wednesday evening to track down the perpetrators.​​ [Forat]

A security source said that the Director of Security for the PMF had arrived in Kirkuk city on Thursday to investigate the incident. The source said that he formed a commission of inquiry and asked city residents to report Daesh sleeper cells. The Director of Security said that an intelligence effort would begin immediately to track down the perpetrators of the attack. [Sumaria]​​ 

DaeshDaily comment.​​ Much is unclear in this terrible incident. Some clarity on where the attack took place would be a good start. Our first question would be why such a large number of military personnel were traveling through an unstable area with no weapons; military and police have often been attacked while off-duty. Our second question would be how many security personnel were traveling with this convoy. There is nothing in the story​​ so far​​ to suggest that anybody shot back.​​ 

 

NINEWA

Fadhil Al-Garawi, a member of the Iraqi High Human Rights Commission, said on Thursday that 4,720 bodies had been recovered in Ninewa Province as of​​ March 10. 2,666 bodies have been identified,​​ 851​​ of​​ which were​​ children. [Sumaria]​​ 

 

Makhmur

 

See major Makhmur-related story under Kirkuk above

 

Mosul​​ city

A senior Ninewa police source said on Thursday that while Daesh members were still trying to hide in Mosul among the citizenry, they were routinely reported and arrested. The source said terrorists no longer had a chance to meet each other or form groups or cells in Mosul. [Forat]

 

The MoI says it dismantled a carrigging gang in Mosul. The gang, composed of 6 persons, was based in the industrial neighborhood in west Mosul. They used to steal cars were left behind after war operations against Daesh. They would disassemble​​ the​​ cars and change their chassis and engine numbers. [BasNews]​​ 

 

Southern Ninewa

Hatra

The Directorate of Military Intelligence said it arrested​​ a​​ Daesh security officer in Hatra, saying he was also​​ among the “most dangerous”​​ perpetrators​​ of the Camp Speicher massacre.​​ [Sumaria]​​ 

 

KURDISTAN​​ NEWS

ERBIL

Dindar Zebari, the coordinator of international relations for the KRG, described​​ the recent Human Rights Watch (HRW) report, which alleged that Kurdish authorities are torturing children to admit their Daesh affiliation, as lacking in both objectivity and impartiality. [Rudaw]

 

REPORTS FROM TURKEY​​ 

 

No reports

 

REPORTS FROM SYRIA

 

NATIONAL NEWS

Foreign policy

United States

The US is pressuring its​​ European allies to commit​​ by Friday​​ to a US proposal to “stabilize” northeastern Syria, according to US officials, without specifying the details of the plan. [WSJ]

 

The US said that the conclusions of the​​ Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical​​ Weapons​​ (OPCW)​​ investigation committee confirm the role of the Syrian government in the chlorine attack in eastern Ghouta in 2018. The US said that the violators should be held accountable. [EnabBaladi]

 

Anti-Daesh campaign

General​​ Joseph Votel, the Commander of CENTCOM, says Daesh fighters leaving Al-Baghouz are still radicals, and that elimination of Daesh is still a far-reaching goal. He noted that most of them did not say that they regretted joining Daesh. [Sumaria]​​ [AFP]

 

According to​​ BBC Arabic, Hayat Boumediene, known as “the most wanted woman in France,” was killed in a Coalition airstrike in Al-Baghouz. She allegedly participated in the 2015 Paris attacks that left 130 people dead. [Sumaria]

 

Northwest

Afrin

An explosion on Taranda village road in Afrin killed a Turkish soldier and wounded​​ 2​​ others. [Hawar]

 

Northeast​​ 

Raqqa

East​​ Raqqa​​ 

Daesh said on Thursday that it wounded the SDF security official of the Al-Karama area, along with one of his associates, and damaged their vehicle with an IED. [ICDNMar7-Telegram]​​ 

 

Central and West​​ 

Idlib

The SOHR reported 3 airstrikes on Saraqib, southeast of Idlib city, which wounded a woman and a child. Syrian Army troops are also shelling the northwest Hama and​​ northern​​ Latakia. [SyriaHR]

 

Homs

The SOHR said that​​ a​​ commander​​ for​​ the Maghawir Al-Thawra militia, which is backed by the Coalition, was wounded following an attack believed to be by Daesh on his car near Al-Tanaf. [SyriaHR]

Deir Ez-Zor 24​​ also reported that Daesh fired rockets that blew up a vehicle near Al-Tanaf military base on Thursday. The explosion injured Muhannad Al-Tila’, the Maghawir Al-Thawra leader, who was in a second vehicle, near the one that exploded. [ElDorar]

 

East (Deir Ez-Zor)

Albu Kamal​​ District

Over 3,000 Daesh​​ fighters​​ and their families handed themselves over to the SDF in Al-Baghouz. A Belgian Daesh wife said that the Islamic State is in their hearts, and​​ that​​ there are over 1,000 fighters still in​​ Al-Baghouz.​​ She added, “We will raise a new generation of​​ mujahideen​​ to continue the battle.​​ [Rudaw]​​ 

 

Escapees from​​ Al-Baghouz said that​​ the smell of dead bodies is all over the place,​​ and that the​​ people under siege were drinking​​ water​​ directly from the Euphrates​​ River and living​​ on herbs. US and SDF soldiers were searching men standing in long queues. Most men were from Asian and Russian nationalities,​​ with long beards. Civilians are​​ being​​ taken to​​ the​​ Al-Hawl​​ IDP and refugee​​ camp in Hasaka,​​ while Daesh members are​​ being​​ taken to specialized detention camps. [Sumaria]​​ 

 

The​​ AP​​ wrote that “dozens” of fighting-age men who were suspected of being Daesh members surrendered on Thursday, after which they were separated into groups of Syrians, Iraqis, and other nationalities. The suspected fighters were then searched and interrogated by both SDF fighters and Coalition troops. [AP]

 

The​​ SOHR said that the​​ SDF is still clearing mined areas in​​ Al-Baghouz,​​ and that​​ some Daesh fighters are still fortifying to fight till the end. It also said​​ that a new group of civilians and Daesh fighters​​ was expected to depart Daesh-held​​ areas on Thursday. 17,480​​ people,​​ including 2,040 fighters​​ have​​ left the area since February​​ 16. [SyriaHR]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ 17,480!​​ The world’s journalists missed this story as it was happening. As Daesh kept losing territory and retreating, their wives and children and other Daesh civilians retreated with them, until everybody was squeezed into the Al-Baghouz area, a place much too small. Now, with no place left to go and bombs falling, they are surrendering to save their lives. A large percentage are not innocent people, however, and once the immediate crisis is over, there will be an enormous problem over how to manage, feed,​​ process, transport, and apply justice to​​ all those people.

 

A source within the SDF said on Thursday that battles against Daesh in Al-Baghouz have been sporadic, due to the evacuation of civilians and the continued surrender of Daesh fighters. [BasNews]

 

An SDF source said on Wednesday that a Yazidi woman and 14 Yazidi children had been freed from Al-Baghouz. They were kidnapped from Sinjar by Daesh in 2014. [BasNews]​​ 

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Thursday that SDF units in the Al-Baghouz area freed 18 children, including 16 Yazidis and 2 Shia​​ from Tal Afar, who had been kidnapped by Daesh.

DaeshDaily comment.​​ While Daesh atrocities against the Yazidis are well documented, it also kidnapped many Shia women and children,​​ especially​​ Shia Turkmen women from Tal Afar.

 

South​​ 

No reports

 

OTHER MIDDLE EAST/NORTH AFRICA REPORTS

 

Neighboring countries

Saudi Arabia

A statement by 36 nations in the​​ UN Human Rights Council condemned Saudi Arabia’s “continuing arrests and arbitrary detentions of human rights defenders.” The statement referred specifically to the treatment of Saudi women’s rights activists. [NYT]

 

North Africa

Egypt

The Egyptian MoI said that a gunfight between security personnel and a group of terrorists left 7 terrorists killed and 1 Egyptian officer wounded. The incident took place in Giza,​​ just​​ west of Cairo. [Hawar]

 

An Egyptian military spokesperson said on Thursday that​​ counter-terrorism​​ personnel in northern Sinai, in coordination with military engineers, found and destroyed 9 tunnels on the northern Sinai border strip.​​ [AhlMisr]

 

REPORTS FROM OTHER COUNTRIES

 

EUROPE

Great Britain

The​​ Mirror​​ reported​​ that a 27-year-old UK Daesh operative was sentenced to 15 years imprisonment for planning to attack Oxford​​ Street and kill over 100 shoppers. The man published a series of videos threatening to carry out the terrorist operation, referring to himself as “Ghost” and “Eagle.” [BasNews]

 

Germany

The German newspaper​​ Bild​​ wrote that German authorities ignored thousands of reports of the presence of war criminals among asylum seekers, due to the large flow of refugees into the country. [ElDorar]

 

AFRICA

Somalia

A website affiliated with Al-Shabab claimed that a vehicle bomb in Mogadishu killed 5 and wounded 10 others. The attack reportedly took place on the road leading to the presidential palace. [Rudaw]​​ 

 

Nigeria

Daesh said on Thursday that it killed one soldier and stole weapons​​ and ammunition when it attacked a Nigerian Army checkpoint in Damboa town, in Borno State, with machine guns. [ICDNMar7-Telegram]

 

ASIA

Afghanistan

At least​​ 3​​ people were killed and 19 others wounded in mortar attacks​​ in Kabul​​ targeting​​ a gathering of hundreds of people marking the 24th​​ anniversary​​ of the death of​​ Abdul Ali Mazari, leader of the Hezb-e Wahdat party.​​ Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, former​​ President Hamid Karzai, former National Security Advisor​​ Hanif​​ Atmar, former Vice​​ President Yunus Qanuni, Acting Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani, Second Deputy Chief Executive Mohammed Mohaqiq, and other officials were at the ceremony. No high-ranking official was hurt in the attack. But sources said that Abdul Latif Pedram, a presidential candidate and head of the National Congress Party of Afghanistan,​​ sustained injuries in the attack.​​ In a statement later,​​ President Ghani condemned the attack and called it “a criminal act”.​​ A spokesman for​​ the​​ Interior Ministry said​​ that​​ 1​​ suspect was arrested. [TOLONews]

Officials from the Ministry of Public Health said later that 3 people had died and 22 others had been injured in the attack. [Khaama]

Daesh’s version​​ said on Thursday it killed or wounded more than 30 people when it targeted​​ a Shia gathering​​ with 62 mortar shells and 15 rockets, attended by former Afghan President Hamid Karzai, senior government officials, and parliament members, in District 6, in Kabul city. Daesh also said 2 of its terrorists clashed with security personnel at the gathering,​​ using machine guns. [ICDNMar7-Telegram]

 

The Afghan MoI said on Wednesday that a “prominent” leader of the Haqqani network, Mullah Mirwais, had been arrested in Jalalabad, Nangarhar Province, eastern Afghanistan. [Khaama]

 

India/Kashmir

Indian police said that 1 civilian was killed and 32 wounded​​ by a hand grenade attack​​ in​​ a bus station in Jammu city,​​ in the Indian part of Kashmir. The attacker is​​ reportedly​​ a radical Indian​​ jihadi​​ who was​​ previously​​ arrested before​​ fleeing to Kashmir. [Sumaria]

 

DAESH MEDIA

On Thursday,​​ Daesh published​​ the 178th​​ issue of its​​ Naba​​ magazine. In this issue, Daesh published​​ the usual​​ infographic about its attacks in Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Tunisia, Somalia, west Africa, Pakistan, and Afghanistan during the last week. It claimed it conducted 44 attacks, killing or wounding 156 people and destroying 13 vehicles.​​ 

DaeshDaily comment.​​ Of course,​​ Daesh didn’t mention Al-Baghouz.​​ 

 

 

*****

 

READER COMMENTS WELCOME

You are invited to add information to or comment on any Daesh Daily story​​ 

 

March 6, 2019

 

A group of people sitting in front of a crowd

Description automatically generated

Women and Children Evacuated from Al-Baghouz (BBC March 6)

 

 

MAJOR DEVELOPMENTS

 

Iraq

Human Rights Watch slams Iraq & KRG for arresting, prosecuting Daesh children. [..]

Abd Ul-Madhi, CoR committee member stress importance of continuing US, Coalition military​​ role. ​​​​ [..]

Coalition planes take out Daesh tunnel & 5 fighters near Baghdadi. [..]

9 more bodies discovered under rubble in Mosul’s Old City. [..]

 

Syria

UN Security Council debates report on​​ Syria’s role in Damascus-area chemical attacks. [..]

Trump agrees with Congress members who want some US troops to stay in Syria.​​ [..]

Mass evacuation of civilians + hundreds of Daesh fighters continues in Albu​​ Kamal.​​ [..]

SDF blocks tunnel escape attempt by 400 Daesh, as others flee into desert. [..]

SDF frees brainwashed Yazidi child who fought with Daesh. [..]

​​ 

Other countries

Yemen: ​​ Human rights​​ groups says US & British-made bombs have killed 273 civilians, injured at least 749. [..]

Nigeria:​​ ​​ Daesh-backed Boko Haram faction replaces top leader. [..]

Afghanistan:

Daesh attack on Jalalabad airport​​ construction workers kills 17.​​ [..]

Afghan special forces kill 27 Taliban fighters in northern Kunduz Province. [..]

 

REPORTS FROM IRAQ

 

NATIONAL NEWS

Reconstruction

Prime Minister Adel Abd Ul-Mahdi said that the​​ upcoming general census is essential for development plans. The High Council for Population held a meeting to discuss Iraq’s preparations to hold the census in 2020. [Sumaria]

 

The US Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations, Dr. Denise Natali, said on Wednesday in a special interview with​​ Sumaria​​ that the US is now focused on restoring stability, the population, and normal conditions by providing security and services. She said that Iraq can become a state that flourishes through investments, and that US companies would like to strengthen the private sector in Iraq. [Sumaria]

 

The Iraqi government ordered the Ministry of Transportation to finalize the infrastructure improvements at the port in Faw, Basra, due to its extremely high ​​ economic value. The orders were issued following the cabinet meeting on Tuesday. Iraq has been planning to complete the construction of the Greater Faw port since 2012. The project’s estimated total cost is $5 billion. [Anadolu]

 

A UN intelligence report said that the death of millions of Iraqi carp in 2018 was caused by the Koi Herpes Virus (KHV), not pollution. [Sumaria] [Relief]

 

Anti-Daesh campaign

Human Rights Watch (HRW) released a report Wednesday saying that Iraqi and KRG authorities were holding approximately 1,500 children on criminal charges related to affiliation with Daesh. The report said that both Iraqi and KRG authorities arrested and prosecuted children for alleged Daesh connections based on “dubious accusations and forced confessions obtained through torture.” HRW said that the practices of Iraq and the KRG both violated due process, and they were potentially in violation of international law mandating that children recruited into armed extremist groups were entitled to “rehabilitation and reintegration” rather than prosecution. [WaPo] [HRW]

Following this report, the UN said on Wednesday that the children of Daesh members should be dealt with according to human rights laws. [Rudaw]

 

Hamid Al-Hayes, a member of the tribal PMF organization Anbar Salvation Council, said that​​ any Daesh fighter from any nationality handed over by the SDF to Iraq will stand trial according to Iraqi laws. He also said there are over 1,000 wives and children with the Daesh fighters. The Daesh fighters are kept in heavily guarded detention centers,​​ he said. [Sumaria]

 

The Higher Judiciary Council said that a Daesh convict had been sentenced to death for organizing a terrorist attack with a vehicle bomb at Square “55” in Jamila, Sadr City, killing and wounding many civilians. [Sumaria] [Baghdadia]​​ 

 

The Higher Judiciary Council said that an Anbar court validated the confession of a Daesh terrorist known as “Ramadi Security,” who was previously arrested by security​​ personnel. He is facing charges of organizing a vehicle bomb attack in Ramadi and of other terrorism crimes. [Sumaria]

 

Foreign policy

In a​​ statement, Prime Minister Adel Abd Ul-Mahdi stressed the importance of continued cooperation between Iraq and the US to eliminate Daesh and enforce stability in the area. The statement came following a meeting with Dr. Denise Natali,​​ Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of Conflict and Stabilization Operations (CSO).​​ [Sumaria]

 

Abd Ul-Mahdi also received a telephone call from US Secretary of State Mike​​ Pompeo, wherein they discussed the role of US forces in Iraq. [Sumaria]

 

Faleh Al-Essawi, a member of the CoR Security and Defense​​ Committee, said that Coalition forces staying in Iraq is in the country’s interest and delivers a positive message to the international community. He added that the Committee understands that mutual interest is the basis of international relations, and that there is nothing offered free of charge. [Sumaria]

 

CoR Speaker Mohammed Al-Halbusi met with the Iranian Foreign Minister in Tehran, in an unannounced visit. They discussed increased bilateral relations, “developing conditions” in the region, and increasing cooperation in fighting terrorism.​​ Bas News​​ says that Al-Halbusi “praised” Iran’s role in supporting Iraq. [BasNews]

 

The PMF group Al-Nujaba’ (Harakat Hezbollah Al-Nujaba) said its addition to the US terrorism list is merely a “psychological warfare” tactic, and has no actual effect on the ground. Its spokesman Hashim Al-Musawi​​ said that the US does not have the legitimacy to accuse Al-Nujaba’ of terrorism. He added that if the US administration is satisfied with you, then you are a terrorist because you represent its will. [Sumaria]

 

BAGHDAD

North​​ (Tarmiya, Taji, etc.)​​ 

The Directorate of Military Intelligence said on Wednesday that their units arrested a person wanted on terrorism charges in northern Baghdad. [Ghad]

 

ANBAR

Hit

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Wednesday that Coalition planes killed 5 terrorists in an airstrike on a tunnel used by Daesh as an explosives and ammunition storehouse in the desert near Baghdadi.​​ 

 

Rutba

Adel Al-Dulaimi, Commander of the “tactical” Anbar Police Battalion, said that his units executed an aerial landing in the Rutba desert, arresting 2 Daesh fighters and​​ destroying 2 of their vehicles. This comes as part of the security campaign to pursue Daesh in the western Anbar desert.​​ [BasNews]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ This story deserves attention for the indication that Iraq is adjusting to the new desert focus of Daesh by creating more mobile units and using less conventional tactics.

 

SALAHUDDIN

Shirqat

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Wednesday that a tribal PMF fighter was killed by a group of Daesh terrorists who broke into his house, near Kan’ous village.​​ 

 

Baiji

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Wednesday that Coalition planes bombed Daesh positions in the Makhoul Mountains.​​ 

 

DIYALA

Baquba/Southeast Diyala

The Directorate of Military​​ Intelligence said on Wednesday that its units found a cache of military equipment containing mortars and heavy machine guns, in southern Buhriz subdistrict.​​ [Ghad]​​ 

 

Central Diyala (Muqdadiya/Abu Saida)

The Security Media Center said that 1 policeman was killed and 4 were wounded during the pursuit of a Daesh group in Muqdadiya. An IED targeted the police units during the chase in the Tawakul orchards, near Muqdadiya. [Sumaria] [Ghad] [Baghdadia]

Daesh said on Wednesday that it killed one policeman and wounded three others with two IEDs in Tawakul village, in Muqdadiya District. [ICDNMar6-Telegram]

 

Northern Diyala (Khanaqin)

Diyala Police Command said on Wednesday that the Khanaqin and Jalawla police had arrested a person wanted on terrorism charges and destroyed two Daesh safehouses in Khanaqin. [Ghad]​​ 

 

Daesh said it damaged a bus carrying Shia with light weapons on Monday in an ambush in the Hashimiyat area, in Khanaqin District. [ICDNMar6-Telegram]​​ 

 

KIRKUK

No reports

 

NINEWA

The MoI said that intelligence units in Ninewa had arrested a terrorism suspect who was threatening and extorting citizens (locations unspecified).​​ [Etejah]​​ 

 

Makhmur

A spokesperson for the PMF in northern Iraq said that Daesh ambushed PMF soldiers near Makhmur, killing 2 and injuring​​ others, on Wednesday evening. [Rudaw]

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Wednesday that several PMF fighters were killed or wounded when Daesh ambushed their bus on the road between Makhmur​​ and Dibis.

 

Mosul city

On Wednesday, Civil Defense teams recovered 9 bodies buried under rubble in Mosul’s Old City.​​ [BasNews]​​ 

DaeshDaily comment.​​ You know your​​ reconstruction project is severely challenged when its initial phase is removing bodies.​​ 

 

Mosul District

South (Hammam Al-Alil/Shura/Qayara)

Daesh said it wounded two tribal PMF fighters and damaged their vehicle with an IED on Monday in Quneitra​​ village, in Hammam Al-Alil. [ICDNMar6-Telegram]​​ 

Western Ninewa

Sinjar

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Wednesday that Yazidi PMF units captured a Daesh commander near the Syrian border. The source said the PMFs handed the terrorist over to Ninewa Police. The​​ source said the terrorist had previously been sentenced to death in absentia.​​ 

 

KURDISTAN NEWS

No reports

 

REPORTS FROM TURKEY​​ 

 

Military & security developments

Turkish Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu​​ said on Wednesday that Turkey would conduct​​ joint security operations with Iran against the PKK. He said that fewer than 700 PKK “terrorists” remained inside Turkey, and that “terrorist” infiltration into Turkey has greatly subsided. [Anadolu]

 

REPORTS FROM SYRIA

 

NATIONAL NEWS

United Nations

In a closed session on Wednesday, the UN Security Council discussed a report about the involvement of the Syrian government in the chemical attacks on Douma last April. The UK’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Karen Pierce, noted that the resolution held the Syrian government responsible for the chlorine attacks last year, and that the Russian participants didn’t like that. [Anadolu] [UN]

 

Foreign policy

United States

NBC News​​ said on Wednesday that members of​​ Congress sent President Trump a letter requesting that not all US forces withdraw from Syria, due to the possibility of Daesh reemerging and the Iranian presence. He wrote “I agree 100 percent” on the letter in a black Sharpie. [ElDorar]

 

Anti-Daesh campaign

The website​​ Al-Monitor​​ said that the US changed the destination of millions of dollars worth of weapons intended for Iraq, for which they were initially bought, to SDF forces in Syria. The​​ Pentagon said that these weapons will assist the SDF in clearing the last Daesh stronghold in eastern Deir Ez-Zor. 50 Humvees, 20 armored vehicles, 40 tank trailers, 700 light weapons, 2,400 mortar shells, 25 minesweepers, and hundreds of anti-explosive charges are among the weapons in question. [Mada]

 

Northwest

Afrin

A land mine left behind by Daesh exploded and wounded a child in Afrin. The child was taken to the Afrin Hospital. [Hawar]​​ 

 

Northeast​​ 

No reports

 

Central and West​​ 

Homs

The SOHR reported airstrikes, mostly Russian, on Daesh targets east of Homs. [SyriaHR]

 

East (Deir Ez-Zor)

Deir Ez-Zor District

The SOHR reported a search​​ operation by the SDF, backed by Coalition helicopters, near Al-Busayrah town. Large quantities of weapons were reportedly confiscated from known weapons traders. [SyriaHR]

 

Mayadin District

Daesh said on Wednesday it killed an SDF commander with machine guns in Al-Jardhi village, in Dhiban subdistrict. [ICDNMar6-Telegram]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ These “victorious” stories about Dhiban keep coming from Daesh, long after it was defeated in Mayadin. We notice, however, that none of these incidents are reported by any other media, which is suspicious. We can’t tell whether there is a Daesh pocket remaining in Dhiban that the SDF and Coalition have failed to eliminate or Daesh media warriors have found a place far enough from current battlefront action so that its stories won’t be contradicted.

 

Albu Kamal District

An SDF source said that 2,000 armed Daesh fighters have surrendered to the SDF through the “safe route” in Al-Baghouz. He also said that 6,000 people had been evacuated from battle areas in the past 24 hours, including hundreds of fighters. [EnabBaladi]

 

The SDF said it thwarted an attempt by 400 Daesh fighters to escape from Al-Baghouz through a tunnel. The group was being transferred by a specialized trafficking network. They were planning to escape on foot to a remote area. The group was arrested by the SDF. [EnabBaladi]

 

The SOHR said​​ that about 300 Daesh fighters had fled Al-Baghouz for the Syrian desert in Homs and Suwayda, and that they were trying to reach areas in the desert bordering Iraq. [Ghad]​​ 

 

The SOHR reported an SDF sorting process in which civilians are taken to Hasaka, while fighters are kept in detention centers. The SDF also recovered 5 of its fighters who had been captured by Daesh earlier. [SyriaHR]

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Wednesday that SDF units in Al-Baghouz freed a Yazidi child who had been kidnapped by Daesh in 2014. The source said the boy had been brainwashed and was captured fighting alongside the terrorists.​​ 

 

Daesh mourned 2 “major” leaders who were killed in a Coalition airstrike on Al-Baghouz. One was related to the famous Daesh media officer, Abu Mohammed Al-Adnani. [ZamanAlWasl]

 

Daesh said on Wednesday it shot and killed two SDF members in Kashkiya village, in Hajin subdistrict. [ICDNMar6-Telegram]

 

South​​ 

Suwayda

The SOHR reported “heavy” shooting by local tribesmen at unidentified motorcycles east of​​ Suwayda. No casualties were reported. [SyriaHR]

 

OTHER MIDDLE EAST/NORTH AFRICA REPORTS

 

Neighboring countries

Saudi Arabia/Yemen

A report from US and Yemeni human rights groups said that airstrikes using US-made and British-made bombs had killed 203 civilians and injured at least 749. The report covered 27 airstrikes by the Saudi-led coalition between April 2015 and April 2018, all of which were carried out against civilian targets. The report noted, “Many​​ of the attacks appeared to take place far from any potential military target.… Others caused harm to civilians that vastly outweighed any likely military benefit.” [WaPo]

 

Officials from the Saudi-backed Yemeni government visited Washington and New York to ask the Trump administration and the UN to help stop antiquities smuggling from Yemen. [NYT]

 

REPORTS FROM OTHER COUNTRIES

 

EUROPE

Great Britain

On Wednesday morning, Glasgow police received reports of​​ suspicious packages on the grounds of the University of Glasgow campus and the Royal Bank of Scotland in Edinburgh. The police ordered the evacuation of the bank and several buildings of the school. The police later reported that the package found at the school was harmless. [Sumaria] [Telegraph]

 

AFRICA

Nigeria

Sources with “deep knowledge” of the Daesh-backed faction of Boko Haram (ISWAP) claimed that Abu Mus’ab Al-Barnawi had been replaced as the group’s leader. The sources said that the “previously unknown” Abu Abdullah Ibn Umar Al-Barnawi was the replacement leader. Observers noted that Abu Mus’ab Al-Barnawi had previously been considered a figurehead for Mamman Nur, his second-in-command, who was killed by other ISWAP commanders in August 2018. [VanguardNGR]

 

5 farmers were killed and 20 injured on Wednesday when their truck hit a land mine near Maiduguri. The truck was transporting farmers and agricultural workers. The land mine was blamed on ISWAP. [VanguardNGR]

 

ASIA

Afghanistan

Nangarhar​​ 

Jalalabad.​​ An Afghan official said that 16 people were killed in a Daesh suicide attack near Jalalabad airport in Nangarhar. 9 others were wounded. The attack targeted a company carrying out construction projects in the airport. 2 of the attackers detonated themselves, while 3 others were killed in fighting with security personnel. [Rudaw]

Time​​ magazine’s coverage says militants set off a suicide blast on Wednesday morning and stormed the construction company site near the airport, killing at least 17 people, officials said.​​ The dawn assault triggered an hours-long gun battle with local guards, which US troops joined to assist the Afghan troops.​​ 

Among those killed were 16 employees of the Afghan construction company EBE and a military intelligence officer, said Attaullah Khogyani, the provincial governor’s spokesman; 9 others were wounded in the attack, which lasted more than five hours.

Gen. Ghulam Sanayee Stanikzai, the provincial police chief was quoted as saying that “U.S. forces are supporting Afghan forces in securing the area now.” [Time]

 

Daesh’s version said it killed 30 Jalalabad Airport employees and security personnel and wounded 25 others when 2 of its terrorists, who positioned themselves in a nearby building, targeted the residences of the airport employees at the airport with RPG7 rockets, hand grenades, and machine guns. It also said the clashes lasted for 7 hours. It also said the terrorists set off 4 IEDs targeting reinforcement units and vehicles that arrived in the area. Daesh published a photo of the 2 terrorists. [ICDNMar6-Telegram]​​ 

DaeshDaily comment.​​ Although Daesh didn’t mention in the story that the terrorists were killed, the caption indicates their death.​​ 

 

The 201st​​ Silab Corps of the Afghan Military said that 35 fighters from Daesh’s Khorasan affiliate (ISIS-K) had been killed in operations in Achin, Nangarhar Province. [Khaama]

 

Achin.​​ Daesh said it killed or wounded seven “Afghan and American” service members when it set off several IEDs in the Bicha area, in Achin in Nangarhar. Daesh said Afghan forces, supported by Coalition troops, were “trying to advance” in the area. [ICDNMar6-Telegram]

 

Wazir.​​ Daesh said it killed three Afghan soldiers and stole their weapons on Tuesday in clashes in the Wazir area, in Nangarhar. Daesh published a photo of 2 machine guns it stole. [ICDNMar6-Telegram]

Daesh’s​​ A3maq​​ claimed the terrorists stopped an Afghan forces attack on the Wazir area on Tuesday, killing three soldiers. [A3maq-Telegram]

 

Kunar

As the Jalalabad attack unfolded, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani arrived for a visit to neighboring Kunar province to​​ inaugurate an health complex and to lay the cornerstone of a 200-bed hospital.

 

Kunduz

Military sources said that an Afghan Special Forces operation in Imam Sahib District, Kunduz Province, northern Afghanistan, killed 27 Taliban fighters and wounded 16 others. [Khaama]

 

 

*****

 

CORRECTION

Yesterday, we mistakenly published a photo of an IED-damaged vehicle, saying that the​​ explosion took place March 5 in Shura. One of our readers informed us that the photo was actually from a different incident in southern Ninewa on March 2. We apologize for the mistake, and we thank the reader.​​ 

 

READER COMMENTS​​ 

You are invited to add information to or comment on any Daesh Daily story​​ 

 

March 5, 2019

 

A picture containing ground, outdoor, car, truck

Description automatically generated

IED Explosion in Shura (DD March 5)

 

 

 

MAJOR DEVELOPMENTS

 

Iraq

Unilateral expansion of​​ PMF​​ powers​​ raises​​ issues​​ in Baghdad.​​ [..]

Embattled Ninewa Governor attributes migration back to Kurdistan to reconstruction delays. [..]

KRG’s Yazidi​​ Affairs office issues staggering numbers on displaced Yazidis. [..]

 

Syria

Russia’s Lavrov announces comprehensive agreement with Saudis about Syria. [..]

SDF now holding over 2,000 Daesh fighters. [..]

Mass grave found near Al-Rukban refugee camp on Jordan border. [..]

Mass exit of Daesh fighters & family members continues from Al-Baghouz.​​ [..]

 

Other​​ countries

Great Britain: ​​ Police find IEDs at three major London transportation hubs.​​ [..]

Pakistan: ​​​​ Pakistan launches crackdown on banned militant groups. [..]

 

REPORTS FROM IRAQ

 

NATIONAL NEWS

Corruption

The recent activities of the PMF​​ organization​​ are raising concerns among Iraqis, especially after formation of a​​ PMF​​ marine force in Basra. A recent PMF crackdown on​​ cocaine​​ dealers and other drugs is raising questions about the powers of the PMF​​ and its assumption of duties that are supposed to be carried out by the MoI and the police. [BasNews]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ There is a big and continuing story here. The Al-Abadi policy was to move toward unity of command and eliminate the PMF tendencies to act as a separate military entity. Since the last election, there is no apparent progress toward this and considerable regression. Nobody seems anxious to talk about it, but stories like this one keep showing up. Who is really in charge of the PMF organization. Apparently it’s not the Prime Minister.

 

Anti-Daesh campaign

Human Rights Watch (HRW)​​ expressed​​ concern about the possibility of torture for Daesh prisoners transferred from Syria to Iraq. It wrote that the SDF handed over 280 Daesh prisoners to Iraq last week, mostly Iraqis, but also including 13 French nationals. HRW​​ also​​ called on all countries to repatriate their Daesh nationals and try them in their home countries. [Sumaria]​​ [Baghdadia]​​ [HRW]

 

Foreign policy

The US Treasury Department said on Tuesday that it added the Iraqi Al-Nujaba​​ Movement (Harakat Hezbollah Al-Nujaba) to​​ its​​ list of terrorist​​ organizations. Congress classified Al-Nujaba​​ as a terrorist organization last November in a draft bill. The bill called for banning it and individuals associated with it for a period not extending beyond 90 days. This is part of the US attempt to block Iranian military activities in the Middle East. The law was submitted to the US Senate for a decision. A research report published by Congress said that Al-Nujaba​​ receives training and financial support from the Iran Revolutionary​​ Guards​​ Quds Force, and that the Lebanese Hezbollah​​ also​​ trains and advises Al-Nujaba. [Rudaw]

 

BAGHDAD

No reports

 

ANBAR

The Chairman of the Security Committee of the Anbar Provincial Council, Na’im Al-Ka’oud, said on Tuesday that Daesh was trying to disguise its movements in the western Anbar desert by pretending to be nomadic shepherds. Al-Ka’oud said Daesh members​​ are using shepherds’ clothing and imitating their movements, and called on security services to check all locations where nomads and shepherds were located to ensure their safety.​​ [BasNews]​​ 

 

Falluja

Hadi Rzayej,​​ the​​ Anbar Police Chief,​​ announced​​ that police arrested 2​​ terrorism suspects in Al-Hassi, south of Falluja.​​ [Sumaria]

 

Anah​​ (including Rawa)

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Tuesday that tribal PMF fighters killed 3 Daesh terrorists hiding in a tunnel in the desert near Rawa, with hand grenades. The source says the PMFs found satellite mobile phones in the tunnel. The source sent us photos of the terrorists.

 

Al-Qa’im

A security source in Anbar said that 4 women were arrested in Al-Qa’im on charges of Daesh affiliation. The source said that the women were smuggled by armed men from Syria to Iraq. [BasNews]

 

SALAHUDDIN

No reports

 

DIYALA

No reports

 

KIRKUK

Southwest (Daquq)

The IFP said on Tuesday that units from their 5th​​ Division had found 4 IEDs and a sheet containing C4 during a search operation in the Albu Mohammed​​ Hills in Daquq. [Baghdadia]​​ 

 

NINEWA

Nawfal Al-‘Akoub, the Ninewa Governor, said there was a “reverse immigration” from Ninewa to the Kurdistan Region, due to delays in reconstruction and the lack of services. He said the province needs $42 billion for reconstruction. He also demanded the arrest of the former governor Atheel Al-Nujaifi for his role in the city’s fall to Daesh in 2014. [Sumaria]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ Al-‘Akoub’s​​ demand for Atheel Al-Nujaifi’s arrest comes a day after Atheel’s brother, Osama Al-Nujaifi, found “serious” financial violations in Mosul under Al-‘Akoub, and asked the PM to suspend him​​ from his post as​​ Ninewa Governor.​​ 

 

Mosul District

South (Shura)

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Tuesday that a worker was killed and another severely wounded when an IED exploded on a vehicle carrying daily laborers near Shura. The source says local police units arrested several young men accused​​ of planting the IED.

 

Southern Ninewa

Baaj

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Tuesday that PMF units killed 2 Daesh foreign terrorists​​ of​​ Iraqi origin, after capturing them in the Tal Safouk area on the Syria border.​​ 

​​ 

KURDISTAN​​ NEWS

ERBIL

The KRG Directorate for Yazidi Affairs, under the KRG Ministry of Endowments, said that out of about 550,000 Yazidis in Iraq prior to the rise of Daesh, about 360,000 had been displaced from their homes. 1,293 were killed in the first few days of the Daesh attack. 6,417 were kidnapped including 3,548 women. 68 religious shrines were destroyed by Daesh. 71 mass graves have been found and documented by the Directorate for Yazidi Affairs so far. About 100,000 Yazidis are estimated to have emigrated abroad. The Directorate noted that these figures had been seen and approved by the UN. [Anadolu] [Baghdadia]​​ 

 

A Kurdish political source said that the 2 main Kurdish parties, the KDP and the PUK, agreed to nominate Rizgar Ali, a leading figure in the PUK, for the post of Governor of Kirkuk. The PUK will still nominate the Speaker of Parliament for the KRG. [Sumaria]

 

REPORTS FROM TURKEY​​ 

 

No reports

 

REPORTS FROM SYRIA

 

NATIONAL NEWS

Foreign policy

Russia

Sergey Lavrov, the Russian Foreign Minister, says that Russia and Saudi Arabia have reached an understanding regarding Syria. He said that the understanding was comprehensive, concerning all related political issues, without going into details.​​ Sputnik​​ said that Lavrov also met with Syrian opposition figure Nasser Al-Hariri while he was in Saudi Arabia. [ElDorar]

 

Iran

A Syrian source said that Bashar Al-Assad’s recent visit to Iran had borne positive results. The main result was an Iranian commitment to keep supplying Syria with oil derivatives via Iraq. The land route through Iraq is the safest route for such materials to reach Syria. [Sumaria]

 

Anti-Daesh campaign

An Iraqi source said on Tuesday that 6 of the “most prominent” Daesh leaders still in Al-Baghouz had broken their allegiance to Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi. The source said that these 6 leaders included an Iraqi and a Libyan, and that they had called for continued fighting against the SDF. [Buratha]​​ 

 

The​​ Wall Street Journal​​ wrote that the SDF was holding more that 2,000 suspected Daesh fighters, according to US defense officials, which it said was “at least double previous estimates.” US officials said that the SDF had been estimated to hold about 800 foreign Daesh fighters from over 50 countries as of last fall, and that number had increased by “hundreds” over the past 2 weeks. Additionally, they said there was another group of at least 1,000 suspected Daesh fighters from Iraq and Syria who were being held by the SDF, an estimate not previously disclosed. [WSJ]

 

Repatriation

The spokeswoman for the German Interior Ministry said on Tuesday that it had arrived at a final decision regarding its Daesh-affiliated citizens in Syria.​​ Reuters​​ said that Merkel’s conservatives and the Social Democratic Party (SPD), agreed on 3 conditions to withdraw citizenship from German citizens who had fought in the ranks of Daesh: they must have a second citizenship, be adults, and fight alongside Daesh after the new rules are in effect. [ElDorar] [Reuters]​​ 

 

Mark Taylor, a​​ Daesh member from​​ New Zealand​​ known as the “Kiwi​​ Jihadi,” has been captured in Syria. Taylor was previously known for an incident in which he made a Daesh location public by making a geotagged post on Twitter. He claimed that he had not been a fighter, but had only worked for Daesh as a “guard” on the border between Daesh and Syrian government-held territory. Taylor said he regretted not having been able to afford a Yazidi sex slave, and that he married 2 Syrian women instead, but that neither marriage worked out. He said he expected to be able to return to New Zealand, but that he knew that might mean spending “a couple of years​​ in jail. [AP]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ So, every foreign terrorist was given a “civilian” job with Daesh? Is that how Daesh worked? Releasing these terrorists after 2 or 3 years in prison is an insult to every drop of innocent blood that was shed in Iraq and Syria.

 

The wife of French Daesh fighter Jean-Michel Clain told​​ Agence France Press (AFP)​​ on Tuesday that her husband had been killed last month by a mortar in Al-Baghouz, after a drone strike previously killed Fabien Clain, her brother-in-law. Fabien Clain had claimed responsibility for the November 2015 Paris attacks. [AFP]

 

A US judge rejected​​ a request by​​ Hoda Muthana’s lawyer for her case to be “fast-tracked.” Muthana’s lawyer claimed that she was suffering as long as she remained in the Al-Hawl refugee and IDP camp; the US Justice Department said that there was no evidence that she was in “imminent danger.” Hoda Muthana, the “Daesh bride” who was born in the US, is currently the subject of a​​ legal​​ issue​​ over​​ whether she is a US citizen. [Sumaria]​​ 

Northwest

Afrin

An IED explosion on Tuesday evening in Afrin injured 3 members of the pro-Turkey Sultan Murad militia, according to initial reports. [Hawar]

 

Al-Bab

A​​ local network said that a​​ motorcycle bomb explosion in Al-Bab wounded 8 civilians​​ on Tuesday. [ElDorar]

Kurdish sources​​ for what seems to be the same story​​ said that Kurdish​​ resistance fighters” carried out a motorcycle bomb​​ attack in Al-Bab that left 5 pro-Turkey militia fighters​​ killed and 9 wounded. [Hawar]

 

Northeast​​ 

Raqqa

Raqqa city​​ & district

The SOHR says that the SDF arrested a Daesh suicide attacker who was putting on an explosives​​ belt. The attacker was trying to target a burial procession in Raqqa. [SyriaHR]

 

Central and West​​ 

Idlib/Aleppo

Al-Arabiya​​ reported that Turkish military positions were on “high alert” after the Syrian Army shelled a Turkish observation point in Idlib, at which Turkish troops are stationed. [AlMashhadAlAraby]

 

A local network reported that a Daesh cell attacked a Tahrir Al-Sham security force near the Shuaib Mosque in western Idlib city. 1 attacker was killed, while another was chased before detonating himself. [ElDorar]

 

The SOHR reported that a​​ land​​ mine​​ explosion in Deir Hafer, east of Aleppo, killed 5 people. [SyriaHR]

 

A Daesh land​​ mine killed 5​​ civilians​​ and wounded 1, all​​ from​​ the same​​ family,​​ while​​ the family was​​ searching for mushrooms in Khanasir,​​ southeast​​ of Aleppo. [EnabBaladi]

 

Homs

The pro-government newspaper​​ Al-Watan​​ reported on Tuesday that the Syrian Air Force had targeted Daesh movements in the desert outside of Sukhnah. [Reuters]

 

The Russian MoD says a mass grave with over 300 bodies was found near the Al-Rukban camp on the Syria-Jordan border. It described the situation in the camp itself as “miserable.” [SyriaNow]

 

East (Deir Ez-Zor)

Albu Kamal​​ District

Hundreds​​ more​​ people left Al-Baghouz on Monday, including Daesh fighters. An SDF media official said that over 1,000 people left on Monday through a “safe passage,” including “a number of” Daesh fighters. Over 20 trucks carrying people were seen leaving the​​ Daesh-held territory. [AP]

 

A source within the SDF told​​ Bas News​​ that about 2,000 Daesh members surrendered on Tuesday evening in Al-Baghouz, after a safe corridor was opened up for them​​ on the north side of the city. The source said that the former fighters would transfer to an SDF-controlled site on 10 buses. About 200 of them are foreign. [BasNews]

 

The SOHR said that over 2,200 persons left Al-Baghouz on Tuesday, including 260 Daesh fighters. The SOHR said that the fighting and shelling of the area, as well as Coalition flights over the area,​​ are ongoing. The SOHR said that this brings the total number of people to have left the area in March to 16,550, including 1,970 Daesh fighters. [SyriaHR]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ It is worth remembering that Al-Baghouz is a small town. Not many of those leaving are​​ local residents; most​​ were​​ probably were forced out of their homes​​ elsewhere by the fighting and accompanied Daesh​​ in its​​ retreats. This is another way of saying that they are largely Daesh families.

 

South​​ 

Daraa

The SOHR reported that 3 people were​​ injured​​ in Khirbet Ghazaleh,​​ in​​ eastern​​ Daraa​​ on the Damascus-Amman main road, by a land​​ mine explosion caused by grazing livestock. [SyriaHR]

 

OTHER MIDDLE EAST/NORTH AFRICA REPORTS

 

North Africa

Tunisia

Tunisian security services said their units had arrested a “dangerous” terrorist, Osama Al-Tayeb, in the city of Sousse on Tuesday. [Tunisien]

 

REPORTS FROM OTHER COUNTRIES

 

EUROPE

Great Britain

Counter-terror police are investigating​​ 3​​ packages containing explosives found at Heathrow Airport, London City Airport and Waterloo station.

the Metropolitan Police said the “small improvised explosive devices” were found in A4 postal bags.

The force’s Counter Terrorism Command is treating it as a “linked series” and “keeping an open mind” about motives. Irish police are assisting the Met as the Heathrow and Waterloo packages had Republic of Ireland stamps. Heathrow’s Compass Centre was evacuated after a package was reported to police at about 09:55 GMT. The device caught fire when staff opened the bag. A second explosive was found in the post room at Waterloo station with the same “Love & Wedding” stamps.​​ 

Scotland Yard said: “The packages – all A4-sized white postal bags containing yellow Jiffy bags – have been assessed by specialist officers to be small improvised explosive devices.

“These devices, at this early stage of the investigation, appear capable of igniting an initially small fire when opened.”

A Heathrow spokeswoman said the airport would support the police investigation into the “criminal act”.

Ireland’s postal service identified the stamps as its “Love & Wedding” design for greeting cards, wedding invitations and thank-you cards.

The Compass Centre, which is an office for Heathrow staff rather than part of the passenger terminals, remains closed.​​ [BBC]

 

ASIA

Afghanistan

US National Security Advisor John Bolton said that there was “no blind trust” in the Taliban among the Trump administration as negotiations​​ go​​ forward. Bolton added that it would be important to keep a counter-terrorism presence in Afghanistan, and​​ said​​ that consideration was a “very important point” in the negotiations. Bolton was speaking to​​ CNN. [Khaama]

 

Pakistan

Pakistan said on Tuesday that it had launched a crackdown on banned militant groups, and that it had arrested 44 members of banned groups. These included members of Jaish-e-Mohammed, the group that claimed responsibility for a February 14 attack that killed at least 40 people. [Ghad]​​ 

 

 

*****

 

READER COMMENTS WELCOME

You are invited to add information to or comment on any Daesh Daily story​​ 

 

 

March 4, 2019

 

A close up of smoke

Description automatically generated

Al-Baghouz (DMC News Mar 4)

 

 

 

MAJOR DEVELOPMENTS

 

Iraq

Anbar PC flags growing threat from Daesh fighters hiding in the northern desert.​​ [..]

Airstrikes take a toll on Daesh fighters in the Hit desert. [..]

Hamdaniya’s Water directorate restores service to 22 villages, after 4 years. [..]

Ninewa commission recommends suspending Governor Al-Akoub over corruption.​​ [..]

PMFs stop Daesh attack on Hatra. [..]

 

Turkey

Turks arrest 24 suspected Daesh foreign nationals in northern Turkey. [..]

 

Syria

Arab countries back off from restoring ties to Syria after US objects.​​ [..]

SDF frees 307 Daesh prisoners from Raqqa jails. [..]​​ 

Lone Daesh suicide gunman attacks SDF HQ in eastern Raqqa, kills several. [..]

Tahrir Al-Sham executes 10 Daesh in Idlib, in retaliation for restaurant bombing. ​​ [..]

Syrian Army loses at least 21 men in jihadi attack in northern Hama. [..]

6 in Syrian forces killed by Tahrir Al-Sham attack in northern Latakia. [..]

Daesh diehards trying to hold out in Al-Baghouz as more surrender.​​ [..]

Fierce Daesh resistance slows final SDF advance in Al-Baghouz. [..]

 

Other​​ countries

Afghanistan: ​​​​ Airstrikes kills 350 Taliban in one week.​​ [..]

 

 

REPORTS FROM IRAQ

 

NATIONAL NEWS

Reconstruction

Dozens of university graduates and certificate holders demonstrated in front of the Prime Minister’s Office demanding appointments in government departments. [BasNews]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ This may seem an odd and minor incident, but it is a sign of a much bigger problem. As is well understood, Iraq ‘s economy is government-dominated, especially by the oil business, and the private sector is underdeveloped. Understandably, new college and high school graduates have been oriented toward government employment, where most of the jobs are.

Unfortunately, the rest of the story is a corruption story. Politicians​​ have continued to support hiring of new graduates in order to buy political support; this was turned into a fine art​​ by the two major political parties​​ in the KRG. Young Iraqis have acquired a sense of entitlement about receiving​​ a​​ government​​ “salary,” and the motive is not public service.​​ The government has hired far more people than it needs, leaving many of them with little work to do. All of this has created​​ a bloated, inefficient bureaucracy staffed by too many poorly motivated people, which undermines governance and aids corruption.​​ 

Unfortunately, Iraq’s financial condition is now such that it can no longer provide everyone a “salary,” though all the PMF jobs relieved some of the pressure. That small group of demonstrators represents​​ the leading edge of a financial​​ and political​​ crisis.​​ ​​ 

 

Anti-Daesh campaign

The Chairman of the​​ Sahwa​​ Council, Sheikh Wisam Al-Hardan, said on Monday that the withdrawal of US troops from Anbar Province would result in reviving Daesh control over the province. He noted that the majority of Anbar citizens who have been exposed to Daesh activities prefer that US troops remain. Al-Hardan said that Anbar natives consider US forces as peacekeepers and protectors from threats, including armed Iraqi groups. Al-Hardan said that Anbar is “under political pressure” from “many states, including the US, Iran, Russia, and Saudi Arabia” all of whom want Anbar for themselves alone. He says that this causes conflict, and the province must protect its people from the threats. [BasNews]

 

Joint Operations Command announced on Monday that the activities of the International Coalition on the ground and the air were​​ limited and conditional. The statement said that the Coalition did not execute any operations in Anbar. It also said that every operation was performed by Iraqi forces, some​​ with​​ air support from the Coalition. It said that relations with the Coalition continue in every field, including training, advising, logistics, and movements on the ground and air. [Sumaria]

 

The Karkh Criminal Court sentenced 2 Daesh convicts to death on charges of participating​​ in an attack targeting​​ pilgrims​​ to​​ a religious shrine in Balad,​​ Salahuddin. [Sumaria]

 

BAGHDAD

Center​​ (Rusafa, Karkh, etc.)

The Iraqi​​ Bar​​ Association​​ turned into a brawl​​ during a meeting of​​ its​​ general assembly to discuss the budget. Some lawyers protested​​ that​​ their​​ candidacy for the Bar Association’s internal elections had been canceled under​​ the 2003​​ de-Baathification​​ law.​​ This took place on the eve of the​​ Bar Association​​ elections. [BasNews]​​ 

DaeshDaily comment.​​ This is a reminder that many professional associations in Iraq are not independent organizations but are still linked to the government. The arrangement is an anachronistic control mechanism but has not been overcome.

 

North​​ (Tarmiya, Taji, etc.)​​ 

Daesh said on Saturday it killed Iraqi soldiers when it destroyed their SUV with an IED near​​ the​​ Ibn Sina military​​ facility​​ in the Meshahda area, in Tarmiya. [ICDNMar2-Telegram]

 

Daesh said on Sunday it killed two Iraqi soldiers and wounded two others when it set off an IED​​ targeting​​ their patrol near​​ the entrance to​​ Tarmiya. [ICDNMar3-Telegram]

 

ANBAR

The Anbar Provincial Council said on Sunday that there were “hundreds” of Daesh members in the area between the Syrian desert​​ and​​ Ninewa and Salahuddin.​​ PC member​​ Farhan Mohammed Al-Dulaimi said that Daesh continues​​ to keep sleeper cells near the border with Saudi Arabia, Syria, and Jordan. He added that the central government needs to clear the “difficult” areas linking Anbar with Ninewa and Salahuddin, and that the presence of Daesh members in those areas had become a “major threat” to civilians. [Buratha]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ From Anbar north to Ninewa is a long distance, across​​ a​​ large​​ desert, starting from the Falluja and Al-Qa’im districts and all the places in between. “Clearing” has become almost a political​​ objective​​ but​​ has only​​ a​​ time-limited military definition.​​ The same areas have been “cleared” over and over.​​ ​​ Iraq needs to control the desert, which means it needs to move its​​ troops and its governance further ​​ into the desert. This requires a long-term strategy with wide geographic scope, not just another politically satisfying “clearing” operation.

 

The Security Media Center announced the start of a “wide-scale” military campaign in Anbar. The 1st​​ Army Division will be spearheading the campaign, starting from Al-Suqur, southwest of Falluja​​ city, and​​ extending all the way to​​ Al-Dhab’a​​ village near​​ Rutba​​ city. [Sumaria]​​ 

 

The Security Committee of the Anbar Provincial Council refused in advance to host members of Daesh families returning from Syria to Iraq within the Province. This followed reports that Baghdad intended to place them in camps in “remote areas.” However, the Chairman of the Committee, Na’im Al-Ka’oud, said that there had been no request for the province to receive families of Daesh members, and there were no​​ efforts underway​​ to house them in the desert. [NRT]

 

Hit/Haditha

Qatri Al-Samarmad, commander of the tribal PMF in Anbar, said Coalition planes killed 8 Daesh fighters in Al-Hajiya, south of Kubaisa in​​ Hit. A Daesh shelter and a weapons depot were also destroyed in the strike. [BasNews]

In another version of the same story, on Monday,​​ the​​ Security​​ Media​​ Center​​ said that Joint Ops Command and the International Coalition targeted a terrorist group in​​ the​​ Kubaisa​​ desert. It said a strike succeeded in destroying the group. It also said that units from the 29th​​ Infantry Brigade,​​ from the 7th​​ Infantry​​ Division, immediately went out to Kubaisa Desert and discovered that 8 Daesh terrorists had been killed, and that a vehicle had been destroyed.​​ It​​ also​​ found an explosives​​ belt, explosive materials, and food provisions. [Sumaria]

 

The MoD said that Coalition and Iraqi planes attacked Daesh targets in the desert of Anbar, mainly in​​ the​​ Kubaisa and Wadi Horan (Horan Valley)​​ areas. The attack caused a large number of casualties among Daesh fighters. [Rudaw]

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Monday that Coalition planes killed 3 Daesh terrorists and destroyed their vehicle in​​ an​​ airstrike near the Horan Valley area, west of Haditha. The source said the Coalition killed 3 more terrorists in an airstrike on a tunnel in the same area. The source said that Haditha tribal PMF fighters, who arrived at the area after the airstrikes, confirmed that 1 of the killed terrorists was Abu Junaid Al-Ubeidi, a senior Daesh military commander. The source sent us photos of the results of the airstrikes.​​ 

 

The Directorate of Military Intelligence said on Monday that detachments from its 7th​​ Brigade arrested a child soldier recruitment official for Daesh in Hit. [Sumaria]

 

Al-Qa’im

An Iraqi military source said that security measures on the Iraq-Syria border have been tightened,​​ as​​ fighting continues on the other side of the border. Iraqi troops are watching the battles closely from Al-Qa’im and Rummana. [BasNews]

 

Rutba

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Monday that planes dropped leaflets on the desert near Rutba,​​ warning shepherds to leave the area, saying it would be considered a military zone.​​ 

 

SALAHUDDIN

Baiji

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Saturday that 2 AAH fighters were killed in a Daesh attack on their positions near the Makhoul Mountains. The source said Daesh terrorists stole weapons and military uniforms from these​​ positions after the remaining AAH fighters fled. ​​ 

 

Samarra

The MoD said that airstrikes in the Jazeera Thirthar​​ (desert)​​ area of Samarra had killed 10 terrorists, including 2 suicide bombers, and destroyed their safehouses.​​ [MoD Website]​​ 

 

Southern Salahuddin​​ (Balad,​​ Dujail)

Daesh said it killed the Badr Organization “education wing” commander on Thursday in an ambush in the Al-Sajla area, in Dujail​​ District.​​ 

 

Daesh said it killed two IFP policemen with machine guns on Sunday in Farahatiya, Ishaqi subdistrict. [ICDNMar4-Telegram]​​ 

Daesh said it wounded a tribal PMF fighter with machine guns on Sunday in the Yathrib area. [ICDNMar4-Telegram]

 

DIYALA

Central Diyala (Muqdadiya)

Daesh said that it targeted Shi’i people in the Al-Askari neighborhood of Muqdadiya city with a Katyusha rocket on Saturday. [ICDNMar3-Telegram]

 

KIRKUK

Hawija​​ 

A security source said on Saturday that 4 Daesh members had been killed during a PMF operation in​​ Al-Hajal village, Riyadh subdistrict. [Sumaria]​​ 

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Monday that 2 IFP policemen, including a captain, were killed when their pickup vehicle was destroyed by an IED on the road between Hawija and Al-Sada village.

 

A security source said that 20 “Austrian” bombs, a 70 kg bomb, and 7 “homemade” rockets were found in Mahmudiya village in eastern Hawija, ready for operation. They were all defused. [Sumaria]​​ 

 

Southwest (Rashad)

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Saturday that 4 IFP policemen, including an officer, were killed when an IED exploded on their military vehicle near Rashad.​​ 

 

NINEWA

Nineveh Plain (Hamdaniya)

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Saturday that the Hamdaniya Directorate of Water renovated water networks servicing 22 villages in the Hamdaniya area,​​ for the first time in 4 years.​​ 

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Monday that PMF units captured​​ a​​ Daesh commander at a checkpoint on the road between Mosul and Erbil in Hamdaniya. The source said the terrorist was a former captain in Saddam’s Special Guard.​​ He​​ was carrying fake IDs and trying to flee from Erbil to Turkey. ​​ 

 

Mosul​​ city

Osama Al-Nujaifi, head of​​ the​​ factfinding committee in Mosul,​​ recommended that​​ the​​ Prime​​ Minister​​ suspend the powers of​​ Ninewa Governor​​ Nawfal Al-Akoub and ban him from traveling.​​ Al-Nujaifi​​ said​​ that “serious” financial​​ violations were found in Mosul under Al-Akoub,​​ in addition to the waste of public​​ funds​​ through activities that were “not organized on a systematic or legal basis.​​ [Sumaria]

DaeshDaily comment.​​ Readers may​​ recall​​ that in early February, Al-‘Akoub was accused of being behind the assault​​ on​​ a​​ civic​​ activist after the activist documented the Daesh connections of some of Al-‘Akoub’s associates.

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Saturday that a group of armed men, in civilian clothes, shot at the houses of several Daesh members in​​ the​​ Al-Thawrah​​ and Al-Mansour neighborhoods​​ in west Mosul. The source said no casualties​​ occurred.​​ 

 

Mosul District

South (Qayara)

Daesh published photos on Saturday of killing civilian men in their house in Al-Thaya village, Qayara. Daesh claimed the victims were “tribal PMF intelligence” members. [ICDNMar2-Telegram]

 

Southern Ninewa

Hatra

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Saturday that PMFs and tribal PMF units stopped a Daesh attack on Hatra. The terrorists were trying to infiltrate the city from the south. The source said 4 PMF fighters were wounded in the attack.​​ 

 

A​​ DaeshDaily​​ source said on Saturday that Coalition planes killed Falah​​ Dhiab​​ Al-Risha, a senior Daesh commander, in an airstrike on a tunnel near Al-Sakhri village, south of Hatra. ​​ 

 

KURDISTAN​​ NEWS

No reports

 

REPORTS FROM TURKEY​​ 

 

Military & security developments

Turkish security sources said that Turkish​​ counter-terrorism​​ personnel had arrested 24​​ foreign​​ nationals​​ suspected of belonging to​​ Daesh—in Ilk Adam and Tekkekoy, in Samsun Province, northern Turkey. [Sumaria]

 

REPORTS FROM SYRIA

 

NATIONAL NEWS