ISIS attacks in Kirkuk and Diyala kills 11

ISIS attacks in Kirkuk and Diyala kills 11
ISIS militants are using weather conditions and sandstorms to step up attacks on Iraqi civilians and security forces.  
2 min read
25 May, 2022
Iraqi forces launch a military operation titled "The Iron Hammer" against ISIS which carries out frequent attacks in the areas between the Iraqi governates of Kirkuk, Saladin and Diyala on 19 April 2022 in Kirkuk, Iraq. [Getty]

Islamic State (ISIS) militants killed at least 11 people in two separate attacks in Kirkuk and Diyala provinces late Monday, using sand storms as cover for their operation, Iraqi officials said.

"ISIS gangs, exploiting the sandstorms, opened fire at innocent farmers at Sami Asi village of Taza sub-district of Kirkuk province, consequently six civilians were martyred," the Iraqi Security Media Cell said on Twitter, adding that swathes of wheat farms were burnt, and the Iraqi security forces launched an operation to look for the militants. 

According to information obtained by The New Arab from an Iraqi security source, the area falls under the jurisdiction of the Iraqi Federal Police. 

According to Iraq's state news agency, deputy speaker of the Iraqi parliament, Shakhawan Abdulla, said that the parliament will establish a special committee to "investigate negligent persons, identify the reasons behind the security breach and ways to secure the area."

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Late on Monday night, ISIS extremists also attacked Al-Islah village in the Jalawla district of Diyala province, in which four civilians and an Iraqi soldier were killed, while seven others were wounded, including two soldiers. 

A senior security delegation, headed by a deputy the commander of the joint operations, Lieutenant-General Abdul-Amir Al-Shammari, visited the village on Tuesday "to see the situation on the ground and meet with the commanders." 

Major General Tahsin Al-Khafaji, a spokesperson for the Joint Operations Command, said in a statement to the press, "Several important and decisive decisions and measures were taken to prevent any breach that might occur when dust storms occur."

IS militants dominated large swathes of Iraq and neighbouring Syria in 2014, declaring a "caliphate" before Baghdad, backed by an international coalition, fought the organisation and declared victory in late 2017.

But a low-level jihadist insurgency persists since then, particularly in rural areas north of Baghdad around the city of Kirkuk and in the eastern provinces of Diyala and Salaheddin.