ISW Iraq SITREPs: July 3-21, 2014

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Every day during the 2014 ISIS crisis in Iraq, the Institute for the Study of War publishes a Situation Map that indicates significant activity for that day with an analysis of what it means for the current situation as well as what to watch for in the near future. Subscribe to all updates at www.understandingwar.org

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ISW Iraq SITREPs: July 3-21, 2014

  1. 1. Iraq Situation Reports July 3-21, 2014 ISW Iraq Team Institute for the Study of War Subscribe to Iraq SITREPs here: http://www.understandingwar.org/iraq-blog
  2. 2. Iraq Situation Report: July 3, 2014 Repercussions from the clashes between the ISF and the followers of Mahmoud al-Sarkhi continue to unfold. Sarkhi is a Shi’a cleric who positions himself as a marja‘a, or Shi’a religious authority, of Iraqi and Arab origin. This is seen as a direct challenge to Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani. On June 26, Sarkhi criticized Sistani’s June 13 anti-ISIS fatwa. Sarkhi followers have clashed with U.S. forces in the past, in addition to engaging in skirmishes with the Iraqi Security Forces in the spring of 2012. Further clashes in the south are likely to stretch the ISF’s already limited resources, creating instability in areas that the ISF need to remain under control as they seek to focus on ISIS. 100km Qaim 9 by Ahmed Ali, ISW Iraq Team, and Nichole Dicharry 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha ISIS ISF Followers of al-Sarkhi Major Cities Major Clash Kidnapping Armed Drones SVEST 4 1 7 3 2 6 1 According to an unnamed activist in Mosul, criminal activity, including kidnapping for ransom, is on the rise primarily in western Mosul.The perception is that ISIS is not tackling this issue because it is prioritizing other missions. In general, reports indicate difficult living conditions in the city due to lack of payment for government officials since the fall of Mosul on June 10. ISF ordnance teams are reportedly dismantling large numbers of IEDs emplaced by ISIS in the Salah ad-Din provincial government building in the southern outskirts of Tikrit. 2 On July 2, a suicide bomber wearing an SVEST attacked a Husseiniyya — a Shi’a religious center — in the Jihad neighborhood in southwestern Baghdad killing at least 5 individuals and injuring at least 13 others. 3 5 The Iraqi Police in Babil arrested 28 armed Sarkhi supporters in Hilla who were reportedly inciting violence and calling on supporters to head to Karbala. 7 The Iraqi Security Forces have besieged the neighborhoods of Saif Saad and Molhaq in southern Karbala city where Shi’a cleric Mahmoud al-Sarkhi and his followers have a strong presence.The security forces are searching for Sarkhi who is believed to have taken shelter in one of these neighborhoods after the ISF burned his office and residence. Forces from the 31st Brigade, 8th IA Division, FP, and popular committees launched an operation against ISIS in the areas of Buhairat, al-Ruaia, and Fadhliya, northern Babil.The ISF used air assets and artillery in the operation. 5 The IA and IP in Diyala, supported by IA Aviation and artillery, launched an operation in villages around the sub-district of Mansouriyah, located north of Muqdadiyah. 6 Raid 4
  3. 3. Iraq Situation Report: July 4, 2014 ISIS targeted the Baiji refinery and IA positions south of Tikrit, likely to divert attention and resources from the ISF counter-offensive in Tikrit. Clashes and indirect fire continued in Samarra, indicating that ISIS has forces that can operate in the vicinity of Baiji, Tikrit, and Samarra simultaneously. There is also increased Iraqi Shi’a militia activity south of Baghdad. The protection of Mahmudiyah and Madaeen is a priority for the Iraqi Shi’a militias in order to prevent ISIS advance into Baghdad from the south, in addition to securing the shrines in Samarra and Karbala. 100km Qaim 9 by Ahmed Ali, ISW Iraq Team, and Aaron Reese 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha ISIS ISF Unknown gunmen Major Cities Major Clash Airstrikes Kidnapping SVBIED Armed Drones ISF and Militias 4 1 3 Forces from the Counter-Terrorism Services (CTS), 9th IA Division, and IA Aviation repelled an ISIS attack against the Baiji refinery. 2 1 A Suicide Vehicle-Borne Improvised Explosive Device (SVBIED) targeted a gathering of the Iraqi Army (IA) in the Dijla district, south of Tikrit.The attack resulted in the death of 12 soldiers and injury of 27 soldiers. 2 Clashes took place in Samarra that resulted in the death of 10 ISIS members and the injury of two members of the Sadrist Peace Brigades (PB).The source added that ISIS shelled PB Headquarters with mortars. 3 5 SU-25 jets bombed three locations in Hawijah southwest of Kirkuk, where ISIS members are believed to concentrate in order to “maintain weapons and prepare explosives.” The head of the Baghdad provincial council, Riyadh al-Adhadh, stated that there are cases of kidnappings and killings in Baghdad province, specifically in the areas of Mahmudiyah and Madaeen. 5 4
  4. 4. Iraq Situation Report: July 5, 2014 ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi delivered a public sermon in his proclaimed role as Caliph Ibrahim, the leader of the Islamic State, presenting a major challenge to al-Qaeda senior leader Ayman al-Zawahiri. The public appearance of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in Mosul and the destruction of shrines and mosques in Mosul and Tal Afar indicate that ISIS control in northern Iraq is uncontested. Meanwhile, ISIS went on the offensive against the ISF in Tikrit and Baiji, indicating that their northern campaign has not culminated. Additionally, ISIS projected explosive attacks in other provinces. The bridge attack in Ramadi likely aimed to isolate the ISF in Anbar in order to facilitate the capture of Ramadi, Haditha, and Hit. The VBIEDs in Basra demonstrate the far reach of ISIS and their capability to attack the Shi’a heartland while the ISF and Shi’a militias concentrate forces elsewhere. 100km Qaim 9 by ISW Iraq Team and Aaron Reese 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha ISIS ISFMajor Cities Major Clash Armed Drones Anti-ISIS Tribes VBIED Execution Shia militias Basra 4 1 3 ISIS released a video of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi leading Friday prayers in a mosque described as the Grand Mosque, located in central Mosul.This is his first known video appearance. 2 1 ISIS released images that illustrated the destruction of shrines and Shia mosques in the city of Mosul and in Tal Afar. Salafi Islamists believe that such shrines are representations of polytheism and should therefore be destroyed. 2 Security forces in Tikrit University, located north of Tikrit proper, reportedly repelled an attack by ISIS on the university. 4 5 Anti-ISIS tribal elements targeted an ISIS leader near the area of Rashad, south of Kirkuk.The attack was successful in killing the ISIS figure. Two VBIEDs detonated sequentially in central Basra, resulting in the death of at least two individuals and the injury of at least six others. 8 6 ISIS launched an attack on the Baiji refinery from two axes, initiating heavy clashes that lasted throughout the night. The ISF is still in control of the facility. 3 ISIS targeted a strategic bridge in the area of Saqlawiah, northwest of Fallujah, using IEDs.The bridge was on the highway that connected Baghdad to Ramadi. 5 The IP found two unidentified dead bodies in the area of Shula, northwestern Baghdad.This was most likely the work of Iraqi Shia militias. 7 6 7 8
  5. 5. Iraq Situation Report: July 6-7, 2014 ISIS attacked the northwest Baghdad neighborhood of Kadhmiya for the second time in a week, this time employing an SVBIED. This indicates that ISIS can still attack heavily protected areas in Baghdad with vehicles. The attack upon the 6th IA Division commander west of Baghdad, indicates that anti-government forces in the area are conducting visual observation of ISF movements. Meanwhile, ISIS went on the offensive in Tikrit and also attacked ISF and Shi’a militia elements at Camp Speicher. It is unclear if ISIS attacked from within downtown Tikrit or from outside the city, but ISIS is still able to go on the offensive in the north. Nevertheless, ISIS is meeting with resistance from some tribes in northern Salah ad-Din as they attempt to enter new villages. The ISF response to ISIS now includes airstrikes against bridges deep within ISIS control zones, such as the Zab Triangle connecting northern Salah ad-Din to Hawija. The precision of the airstrike against a bridge in this zone indicates that the pilot of the SU-25 was likely Russian or Iranian. The overt activities of Shi’a militias in northern Babil indicate that Jurf al-Sakhar may become a principal attack zone as ISIS and Shi’a militias face off directly. The task organization of multiple Shi’a militia groups and Federal Police to protect Samarra demonstrates orchestrated role management. 100km Qaim 9 by ISW Iraq Team, and Heather L. Pickerell 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha ISIS ISF Unknown gunmen Major Cities Major Clash Airstrikes SVBIED Shi’a militias SVEST 7 1 On July 7, an airstrike targeted the Rashedeya area, north of Mosul, killing and injuring 40 individuals and damaging 20 houses, prompting 75 Turkmen families to flee the area. 1 8 6 2 3 5 4 On July 6, ISIS launched an attack on Camp Speicher, west of Tikrit, where IA, CTS, and Iraqi Shi’a militias are positioned. 2 On July 7, heavy clashes took place between ISIS and tribal elements from the villages of Zowiya and Mishak in northern Salah ad-Din after ISIS attempted to enter the villages. 3 6 On July 6, an SU-25 aircraft targeted a bridge connecting Zab, south of Kirkuk, to an area north of Salah ad-Din. On July 6, the Babil local government announced that it will create a 50 km sand berm extending from the Owissat area in northern Babil to the Razaza Lake.The berm is intended to disrupt ISIS supply lines. Also, a local government official stated that Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq (AAH), Katai’b Hizb Allah, and Abu Fadhil al-Abbas Battalions are operating in northern Babil. 8 On July 7, an SVBIED targeted a security checkpoint in Kadhmiya, northwestern Baghdad, killing at least five individuals and injuring 15 others. On July 6, an SVEST attack on a local café in the area of Washash, western Baghdad, killed 5 individuals and injured 12 others. On July 7, the commander of the 6th IA Division was killed in an area west of Baghdad.There were conflicting reports whether he was killed by mortars or sniper fire. 5 On July 7, Badr and AAH forces were reportedly tasked with protecting the Askari Shrine in Samarra while forces from the Federal Police were deployed to the area of Jalam, northeast of Samarra. Meanwhile, forces from the Sadrist Peace Companies are protecting the area around the city. 4 7 Anti-ISIS Tribes
  6. 6. Iraq Situation Report: July 8, 2014 ISIS continues to threaten tribes as it attempts to enforce the pledge of allegiance to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of ISIS and the self-proclaimed Caliph of the Islamic State. The fall of Zowiya indicates the challenges the tribes in rural villages will face in countering ISIS, which may be focusing on rural areas in order to gain control of lines of communication and, eventually, other urban areas. ISIS continues to attack the Samarra area where the Sadrist“Peace Brigades”are currently consolidated as a holding force. ISIS’s effort in Samarra is intended to divert resources from Tikrit, although the Iraqi Security Force likely deems the Peace Brigades sufficient to secure Samarra without reinforcement. ISIS is establishing a system by which it can financially benefit from controlling oil fields, such as Ajil, in northern Iraq. Further gains of oil resources by ISIS hinge on the fate of the Baiji refinery, which the Iraqi government continues to try to secure. 100km Qaim 9 by Ahmed Ali, ISW Iraq Team, and Heather L. Pickerell 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha ISIS ISF Unknown gunmen Major Cities Major Clash Airstrikes SVBIED Shi’a militias Anti-ISIS Tribes Anti-Government Armed Groups On July 7, two SU-25s reportedly targeted buildings located in central Tuz Khurmatu, which is Peshmerga- controlled. One of the damaged buildings belonged to the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK).These attacks resulted in the death of one child and the injury of eight other individuals.This has generated discontent among the local government, the Peshmerga, and the PUK. 5ISIS elements established control of Zowiya village, northern Salah ad-Din after heavily clashes with local tribes that had resisted. ISIS fired approximately 60 mortar rounds, killing 13 individuals over the course of the fighting. ISIS gunmen also blew up 10 homes in the village and searched homes for weapons. Other reports indicated that 50 tribal members were executed by ISIS. 1 5 2 1 7 3 4 6 According to an anonymous source in Jalula, Peshmerga forces are using tribal elders as mediators to negotiate with gunmen in order to peacefully take control of the predominantly Iraqi Arab neighborhoods of al-Tajnid and al-Wihda. 6 An SVBIED detonated at an IP checkpoint in southern Samarra.The attack resulted in the death of two IP members, two civilians, and the injury of six others, half of whom were civilians. Also, multiple IEDs detonated on an IP patrol in southern Samarra, killing three IP members and burning four IP vehicles. 2 The deputy chairman of the Anbar Provincial Council, Falih al-Issawi, stated that ISIS militants killed several leaders of anti-government armed groups at a July 6 meeting in Fallujah after the leaders refused to pledge allegiance to the leader of ISIS, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Issawi added that the incident heightened tension in the city and called for the Iraqi Government to take advantage of this opportunity to reach out to these groups. 3 4 An anonymous medical source at the Fallujah General Hospital stated that four Katyusha rockets fell on the hospital and on the Fallujah College of Medicine. Sources from the hospital also added that mortars landed on civilian homes in the Fallujah neighborhoods of al-Askari, al-Jughayfi, al-Nazal, al-Shuhada, and Jubail, wounding seven civilians. The Mayor of Tuz Khurmatu, Shalal Abdul, stated that ISIS has been extracting oil a Hamrin Ridge area and the Ajil Oil Field north of Salah ad-Din and selling that oil to generate revenue. According to Abdul, ISIS is selling tankers of oil to smugglers for $ 10,000-$ 14,000 each. 7 Peshmerga Execution
  7. 7. Iraq Situation Report: July 9, 2014 ISIS has expanded its posture in Diyala, an area in which it has clashed for territory. Iraqi Shi’a militias have, however, held a line against ISIS advances at Khalis. The seizure of the nearby Sudur mini-dam is significant in particular if ISIS continues to control it. ISIS has experi- ence with utilizing dams as assets to demobilize the ISF, as evident in the April flooding of areas around the Fallujah dam. The discovery of bodies in Babil is a significant event as well. The identities of the victims and perpetrators are unclear. However, on June 23, 70 prisoners were killed in an attack targeting a convoy transporting prisoners from Hillah to Nasriyah. ISW assessed that they were likely killed by the ISF to prevent their escape and no bodies were found. If the bodies discovered are those of the victims of the June 23 attack, the Iraqi Sunni community will likely view this as a retaliatory sectarian attack. 100km Qaim 9 Unknown Gunmen by Ahmed Ali, ISW Iraq Team, and Aaron Reese 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha ISIS ISF Major Cities Major Clash Armed Drones VBIED Execution Shi’a militias Airstrikes Raid Military Parade A VBIED detonated in Jaza’ir neighbor- hood, northern Hillah city near the federal court building, and 2 VBIEDs detonated in the Imam sub-district in Mahawil, northern Babil. At least 11 individuals were killed and wounded.The IP in Babil found 50 unidentified bodies in the al-Nil area, north of Hillah.The bodies were reportedly decomposed and had gunshots to the head and some were handcuffed. 4 1 3 An airstrike targeted oil tankers in the area of Hamam al-Alil, south of Mosul causing serious damage with no reported casualities. The reserves included tanks of fuel.The incident was reported as a drone strike, although the ISF is not known to possess this capability. 2 1 Three Syrian aircraft carried out airstrikes in Qaim.The strikes targeted the meteorological observatory center and the city council, and caused damage to four homes and three shops which resulted in the death of seven civilians and injured six others. 2 An anonymous police source in Anbar stated that ISIS gunmen with light and medium weapons attacked the Hurriyah IP station in the area known as “5 km,” western Ramadi.The gunmen also attacked security checkpoints in the “5 km” area leaving five IP members dead and three wounded in addition to seizing a military transport vehicle and IP weapons. 4 5 ISIS seized the Sudur mini-dam located approximately 3 miles east of Khalis after clashing heavily with the ISF in the area. The ISF started an effort to retake it. Earlier, ISIS targeted the Sudur IP station, in the outskirts of Mansouriya, which resulted in the death of one captain and the injury of five IP members. The IA and the IP, supported by IA Aviation, carried out an operation in the orchards of Sudur. 8 6 IA aviation targeted four homes in Dhuluiyah, south of Samarra, killing two individuals and injuring 15 others from the same family.The local government in the area demanded an investigation by the MoD since the “sub-district has no armed activities.” 3 According to a security source in Kirkuk, ISIS members conducted an armed parade using 300 vehicles in the areas of Hawija, Manzala, Multaqa, and Riyadh, located southwest of Kirkuk. ISIS members paraded using equipment recently seized from the Iraqi Army. 5 A member of Abu al-Fadhil al-Abbas Brigade was killed and another one was injured in the area of Snidij, northern Babil by a sniper attack.The commander of the Federal Police (FP) brigade in Jurf al-Sakhar was injured during an operation in the area. 7 6 7 8 Syrian Government Forces On July 8, members from the Scorpion Force carried out raids in the areas of Iskandariyah and Mussayeb which resulted in the arrest of “34 gunmen.”
  8. 8. Iraq Situation Report: July 10, 2014 ISIS may now possess 88 pounds of unenriched uranium that had been stored at Mosul University, elevating the terrorist threat that ISIS poses. Meanwhile, the former IA officers kidnapped in Mosul were most likely targeted by ISIS in in order to minimize their influence over a potential resistance to ISIS control of the city. It is not clear at this time who was responsible for the separate kidnapping of farmers near Balad Airbase, but the presence of armed groups near the base continues to pose a threat to the facility. To the east, ISIS continued to challenge the ISF in central Diyala for a second day while gunmen also clashed with the ISF near Tikrit University. The ISF conducted airstrikes in Mosul and Tikrit, apparently selecting targets assessed to hold strategic value for ISIS. 100km Qaim 9 by Ahmed Ali, ISW Iraq Team, and Heather L. Pickerell 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha ISIS ISF Unknown gunmen Major Cities Major Clash Airstrikes VBIED Kidnapping Armed Drones 6 2 5 7 4 1 3 ISIS kidnapped 30 senior officers of the former IA in Mosul and took them to an unknown location. 1 On July 10, airstrikes targeted the Ninewa Operations Command headquarters building, which is reportedly now used by ISIS as a headquarters. On July 9, airstrikes also targeted a residential area in western Mosul and a lumber yard in the eastern part of the city, which resulted in the death of three individuals and injury of nine others. 2 Heavy clashes took place between the IA and unidentified gunmen near Tikrit University, north of downtown Tikrit. Also, an airstrike targeted the real estate bank in the city. 3 A motorcycle-borne IED detonated near a gas station in southwestern Kirkuk City, which resulted in the injury of seven individuals including three members of the IP. 5 ISIS took control of the Sudur IP station, northeast of Muqdadiyah after the clashes with the ISF reported yesterday continued today. Meanwhile IA forces were reportedly able to recapture parts of the 22nd IA brigade base in the vicinity that were taken by ISIS on July 9. 6 7 Unidentified gunmen stormed a local vegetable market in the area of Yathrib, three miles north of Balad Airbase.The gunmen kidnapped 35 farmers at gunpoint and took them to an unknown location. The IA forces stationed outside of Fallujah continued shelling the city, which resulted in the death of eight individuals and the injury of 35 others, including women and children. 4
  9. 9. Iraq Situation Report: July 11, 2014 Armed groups south, west, and north of Baghdad are becoming increasingly active. ISIS may be on the offensive in Ramadi, Jurf al-Sakhar, Samarra, and northern Diyala. ISIS’s attempt to move from strongholds near Fallujah toward southern Baghdad, in operational coordination with elements in Babil, illustrates ISIS’s continued intention to penetrate the capital’s southern belt with maneuver forces as well as terrorist cells. Ramadi is likely to be the next urban objective that ISIS seeks to control. Volunteers from Shi’a provinces deployed to Anbar in order to shore up security, prevent or delay ISIS’s advance into Ramadi, and force the culmination of the ISIS middle Euphrates offensive. The reinforcements may also increase sectarian clashes in the predominantly Sunni province. ISIS has a presence north of Baghdad that should be considered a separate and available fighting force. Meanwhile, the displacement of populations in Diyala, Anbar, and northern Iraq is exacerbating the humanitarian crisis. The depopulation of these urban and rural areas may further preclude the development of tribal forces resisting ISIS. by Ahmed Ali, ISW Iraq Team, and Heather L. Pickerell 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha 4 2 1 5 7 2 Anbar Governor Ahmed al- Dulaimi stated that 4,000 volunteers arrived in Anbar from Baghdad, Karbala, Najaf, and Basra.The governor added that the volunteers will be deployed in Ramadi and the Upper Euphrates areas to counter ISIS. On July 10, the ISF engaged in heavy clashes with militants in the Albu Hayes area in Ramadi. Militants were reportedly targeting the 8th Brigade headquarters. 4 6 Peshmerga forces took control of the Bai Hassan oil field in northwestern Kirkuk.The field produces 195,000 barrels per day. The oil ministry called on the Peshmerga to withdraw from the field. An SVBIED detonated at a Peshmerga checkpoint in southern Kirkuk city resulting in the death of 2 people and injury of at least 21 people. 1 3 3 Between July 10-11, ISIS destroyed 300 homes in the al-Zowiya village, north of Baiji. ISIS reportedly ransacked the houses before using explosives to destroy them. ISF and Militias 2 An anonymous security source stated that the Sadrist Peace Brigades (PB) prevented ISIS elements from entering north Samarra.The PB fired 20 mortar shells at ISIS elements at which point ISIS elements were forced to withdraw to neighboring houses, using civilian homes as shields. 5 ISF and ISIS clashed near a military base known as the 2nd Corps in Muqdadiyah, northeastern Diyala, killing three ISIS fighters. The source stated that ISIS fighters launched an attack on the base from nearby orchards, but were forced back with the help of IA Aviation. 7 On July 10, IA and volunteer forces repelled an offensive by ISIS in Jurf al-Sakhar as ISIS elements attempted to cross the Fadiliyah Bridge linking Amiriyat al-Fallujah and Baghdad. Military forces were reportedly deployed in Fadiliyah to prevent any possible ISIS advancement towards Baghdad. According to an official in Diyala’s government, 14,000 families had been displaced in the province as a result of the ongoing security operations. ISIS ISF Major Cities Major Clash Armed Drones SVBIED Shi’a militias Airstrikes Peshmerga Volunteers Movement Projected Movement 6 VolunteersV V
  10. 10. Iraq Situation Report: July 12, 2014 The ISIS attack in Haditha demonstrates the continuation of its urban offensive to control cities in the middle Euphrates. The attack is also likely intended to either control the city before the deployment of recently-arrived reinforcement to Anbar, or to divert those resources to Haditha in order to weaken defenses around Ramadi and eventually control it. Either way, ISF defenses in Anbar and northern Diyala will demonstrate how effectively the ISF can hold terrain against ISIS and other armed groups. The interdiction of an ISIS fuel tanker convoy by the Iraqi Air Force demonstrates the intent of the ISF to disrupt ISIS logistics and finance. Meanwhile, ISIS low-level activity near Baghdad continues. The presence of a weapons cache in Arab Jabour indicates that ISIS has established a presence in southeast Baghdad in addition to the north and west. The visible activity of Iraqi Shi’a militia extra-judicial killings is indicative of their freedom of movement and that their role in the defense of Baghdad affects security for citizens. The report of an ISIS police force in Mosul is consistent with their measures of social control in ar-Raqqa, Syria. by Ahmed Ali, Jessica D. Lewis, and Nichole Dicharry 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha 4 1 5 7 2 ISIS attacked at 3:00am local time in the city of Haditha in western Anbar province.The Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) repelled the attack and reportedly killed 13 ISIS elements and detained 31 others. Four Iraqi Police (IP) members were killed while 11 were injured. 4 An IED exploded in the Bayaa neighborhood in southwestern Baghdad city resulting in the death of two people and injury of four people. Unidentified gunmen stormed an apartment complex in eastern Baghdad’s Zayuna neighborhood resulting in the death of 28 women and 2 males.The gunmen reportedly targeted specific apartments in what ISW assesses to be morality executions by Iraqi Shi’a militias. 1 3 3 An IED attack in a Mahmudiyah market resulted in the death of one person and injury of seven. Mahmudiyah is located in southern Baghdad province. 2 According to Shafaq News, ISIS has opened a police department in the city of Mosul and is now accepting volunteers to the department which is known as the “Islamic Police.” According to reports, ISIS is offering a salary to its new police force estimated at over 400 USD, but what time period that covers is unclear. 5 The Iraqi Ministry of Defense announced that it seized shells, explosive material, and bomb-making material in the Arab Jubur area in southern Baghdad.The operation was carried out by the 23rd brigade of the 17th Iraqi Army Division The ISF launched a clearing operation in the northern parts of Muqdadiyah in northeastern Diyala.The ISF is operating alongside the tribes and with support from the Iraqi Army Aviation to clear the areas of the Sudur orchards and the villages of Khamis, Sansal, and al-Jazeera.The ISF reportedly cleared a neighborhood in Sudur. Unidentified gunmen kidnapped the head of the Independent High Electoral Commission in Diyala, Amer Latif, in Buhriz which is located 8 km south of Baquba ISIS ISF Major Cities Major Clash Armed Drones Shi’a militias 6 Kidnapping Unknown gunmen An IED targeted a police patrol in the Corniche Street in southern Kirkuk city.The attack resulted in the injury of three police members. 7 9 9 A medical source in Fallujah stated that in Fallujah 3 people were killed while 18 were injured in mortar attacks that targeted the neighborhoods of al-Jughaifi, Askari, Nazal, Dhubat, Jolan, Shuhada, Nazal, and al-Jbeil. Women and children were among the victims. 6 Iraqi Air Force jets targeted an ISIS “court building” in the Riyadh sub-district in western Kirkuk resulting in damage to the building. ISIS members were wounded in the attack in addition to three civilians who were in the vicinity.The Iraqi Air Force also attacked an ISIS fuel-tanker convoy as it was passing the village of Safra in Riyadh.The convoy was reportedly destroyed. 10 Airstrikes 10 8 8 Anti-ISIS Tribes
  11. 11. Iraq Situation Report: July 13, 2014 ISIS is trying to continue its maneuver campaign along the Tigris and the Euphrates. ISIS launched an attack on Haditha for the second time in two days, which indicates that its previously reported negotiations with the tribes did not succeed. The reported presence of volunteers who are likely Iraqi Shia creates an interesting dynamic and illustrates both the importance of Haditha to the government and the strong desire of tribes in Haditha to prevent ISIS from entering the district. Dhuluiya is the route by which historically AQI and ISIS transited from Diyala to Samarra. The attack upon Dhuluiya indicates the presence of an ISIS force in the vicinity of Samarra that is able to go on the offensive despite the heavy presence of Iraqi Shia militias to the north and the ISF in Balad airbase to the south. Meanwhile, Saddam Hussein's former vice president and Ba'athist leader, Izzat al-Duri, gave his first statement after the fall of Mosul. He highlighted the role of JRTN and other armed groups participating in the offensive and gave a special highlight to ISIS describing its members as “heroes and knights.”Duri also called for unity among the anti-government forces and urged them to postpone their disagreements in order to achieve victory. Duri also called for the Jihadi and Islamic forces to transcend sectarian, ethnic, and regional differences. His statement is significant because it highlights the strategic role that JRTN and other Ba'athist groups are playing in the ongoing offensive, even though they likely support an end-state that collapses the Iraqi government more than establishing an Islamic Caliphate. by ISW Iraq Team and Aaron Reese 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha 4 12 The local government in Zubair District in Basra created an operations room in order to tighten security in Zubair and the sub-districts of Um Qasr and Safwan.The mayor of Zubair stated that 2,200 night guards were tasked with security in order to fill the security gap due to the deployment of some Basra-based ISF units to other provinces. 4 Around 80 gunmen from ISIS launched an attack on Dhuluiya, southeast of Samarra.The gunmen initiated the attack from the north and clashed heavily with the IP and tribal elements from the Jubouri tribe, resulting in the death of three ISIS members and the injury of seven others while four IP members were killed. Clashes are reportedly ongoing.The attack was preceded by a VBIED attack on a bridge that connected the district to Balad in order to prevent reinforcements from arriving. 1 3 3 2 Gunmen from ISIS riding in military and 4x4 civilian vehicles attacked Haditha District from three axes and clashed with the IA, IP, SWAT, volunteers, and tribal element from the Jighaifa tribe for more than four hours.Thirteen ISIS gunmen were reportedly killed and five vehicles were destroyed while casualties from the other sides were not reported. The IA forces stationed outside Fallujah shelled several neighborhoods in the city, resulting in the death of seven individuals including women and a child in addition to the injury of 14 others. ISIS ISF Major Cities Major Clash Armed Drones Anti-ISIS Tribes V Volunteers V V
  12. 12. Iraq Situation Report: July 10, 2014 ISIS is launching attacks into Baghdad with a series of VBIEDs in and near the capital in order to set the terms of battle by probing the defenses of pro-government forces and demoralizing them. The efforts center on the northern belt. The VBIED in Taji's industrial area is particularly significant as ISW continues to assess ISIS's northern approaches to Baghdad and intent regarding ISF bases. ISIS continues to consolidate its gains in Dhuluyia. ISIS continues to destroy houses in ways consistent with the Soldiers' Harvest campaign it has conduct- ed for the past year. ISIS need not be present to cause destruction in a place such as Udhaim, where ISW previously assessed it had a headquarters that it reportedly left several weeks ago. Even though the ISF along with Iraqi Shi’a militias were able to remove ISIS from the area, those forces do not fully control the terrain. The clashes within the ranks of anti-government forces illustrate that ISIS will continue to impose its will on other groups, including the Islamic Army, an Iraqi Sunni insurgency group that fought US forces after 2003, through the use of force despite a conciliatory tone from JRTN leader Izzat al-Duri towards ISIS in his weekend speech. 100km Qaim 9 Iraq Situation Report: July 14, 2014 by Ahmed Ali, ISW Iraq Team, and Heather L. Pickerell 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha 5 4 7 3 2 6 1 A Vehicle-Borne Improvised Explosive Device (VBIED) exploded near a car dealership in the al-Bayaa area, southwestern Baghdad. A second VBIED exploded on 6th Street in the al-Alawi area of central Baghdad. Meanwhile, a third VBIED exploded near an industrial district in Taji, northern Baghdad. The attacks resulted in the death of four people and injury of 21 people. 4 An anonymous security source stated that the Sharia Court in Sharqat was targeted by IA Aviation in the village of al-Sderah, in the vicinity of Sharqat, in northern Salah ad-Din province, resulting in the death of ISIS’s judge in the area, Abu Hajir al-Iraqi. 2 ISF and Militias ISIS JRTN Peshmerga ISF Anti-ISIS Tribes Islamic Army ISIS clashed with elements of the Islamic Army in the eastern suburbs of Sadia in northern Diyala province. A security source added that eight ISIS members were killed in addition to 11 Islamic Army elements. An additional source stated that ISIS executed 10 members from JRTN and the Islamic Army in Sadia as well. 5 ISIS reportedly controls 40 percent of Dhuluiya after two days of ongoing clashes.The remaining 60 percent is reportedly under the control of members of the Juburi tribes and local police. Residents report that there is no Iraqi Army in Dhuluiya and that population displacement from the area has taken place due to clashes. On July 13, ISIS published photos of its members raising ISIS flags on top of government buildings in Dhuluiya. 73 ISIS attempted to take control of Amerli sub-district in eastern Tikrit.The ISIS attack was repelled by a force likely comprised of local and tribal elements in Amerli.The attack has so far resulted in the death of five ISIS members and injury of 15 anti-ISIS tribal figures. Amerli is predominantly Iraqi Turkmen. An SVEST attack targeted a Peshmerga checkpoint in the Qara Tapa area in northern Diyala.The attack resulted in the death or injury of about 11 Peshmerga elements. 1 In the last two weeks, ISIS destroyed 41 houses of local officials, ISF, and Sahwa (awakening) members in the Udhaim area in northern Diyala. 6 Major Cities Major Clash Airstrikes VBIED SVEST
  13. 13. Iraq Situation Report: July 15, 2014 ISIS is likely seeking to establish a presence in Kirkuk city. The pattern of attacks in the city indicates an early replication of previous ISIS efforts in other parts of Iraq where ISIS was seeking to soften defenses and establish control. In Mosul, photos of the distribution of food aid represent an attempt by ISIS to project a sense of normalcy and a functioning state while avoiding blame in light of reported difficult living conditions in the city. Furthermore, ISIS is exhibiting signs of confidence by not protecting the identities of its members in published photos. The Mujahidin Army, an Iraqi Sunni insurgent group founded after 2003, rejected ISIS’s attempt to establish a state. It will be important to watch how ISIS reacts to smaller groups that reject its authority in areas it seeks to control. by Ahmed Ali, ISW Iraq Team, and Aaron Reese 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha ISF and Militias V Volunteers Peshmerga Mujahidin Army 4 1 5 7 2 Unidentified gunmen destroyed the Albu Ghaib Bridge in the Saqlawiyah area in Anbar province.The bridge connects the Saqlawiyah with Ramadi. 4 The Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) published photos of its members distributing food supplies to families, presumably in Mosul.The supplies are provided in bags stamped with “Relief Department-Islamic State”labels. Notably, ISIS members do not have their faces covered or pixilated in the photos as is normally ISIS procedure.The photos emerged as ISIS has reportedly instructed food ration agents not to distribute food to Iraqi Christians, Yazidis, or Shabak. 1 3 3 An IED attack targeted an IA patrol in the village of Arab Jassim in Yusufiyah, resulting in the death of one IA member and the injury of four. A mortar attack targeted Yusufiyah as well resulting in the death of a civilian and the injury of two children. 2 ISF launched a clearing operation in Tikrit, reportedly involving counter-terrorism, IA, and IP forces.The operation was named “al-Saif al-Batar”[“The Severing Sword”] and was launched from the southern and northern parts of the city.There are reports that the ISF were able to secure important locations in the city including the Tikrit hospital and police academy. However, other security sources indicate that ISF push into the city was hampered by ISIS snipers. 5 The Mujahidin Army, an Iraqi Sunni insurgent group founded after 2003, reportedly distributed leaflets in the northern neighborhoods of Diyala in which it rejected pledging allegiance to ISIS head Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Reportedly, the leaflets also criticized the establishment of the ISIS “Caliphate.” Two VBIEDs targeted an Iraqi Army and a volunteers’ convoy near a restaurant in southern Samarra.The attack resulted in the death of five people and injury of 23 others. ISIS ISF Major Cities Major Clash Armed Drones 6 7 Two VBIEDs detonated near the Hay market in Sadr city that resulted in the death of 7 people and injury of 34 people. 6 Three attacks took place in the southern parts of Kirkuk city. An explosion targeted a police patrol in the Wasiti neighborhood in Kirkuk resulting in the injury of one person. In the Aruba neighborhood, a “primitive” bomb targeted the house of a member of the anti-crime department in the city and also resulted in the injury of his son who is a member of the Peshmerga. In the Sikak neighborhood, an IED attack targeted the house of the head of the Iraqi Turkmen Front’s office in Diyala. 8 8 V VBIED
  14. 14. by ISW Iraq Team and Nichole Dicharry 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha Peshmerga Airstrikes 4 1 5 7 2 Heavy clashes took place between ISIS and the Peshmerga near the Tal al-Ward area, 20 km southwest of Kirkuk city.The clashes are reportedly ongoing and ISIS mortar attacks resulted in the injury of 21 Peshmerga members. 4 A local leader of Ansar al-Sunna, an Iraqi Sunni armed group, was found decapitated in the outskirts of Sadia after he disappeared from the area last week. 1 3 3 Security forces found 12 unidentified dead bodies in different areas of Baghdad. 2 Two hundred families fled the area of Tajnid, southern Julula, after ISIS gunmen took control of large areas of the neighborhood. Also, the Peshmerga clashed with gunmen in the area of Wihda, southern Julula. 5 ISIS reportedly destroyed 20 houses that belonged to ISF personnel in Hawija. The members of the Iraqi Security Forces that launched the assault on Tikrit yesterday retreated from their positions.They faced heavy clashes with ISIS and their progress was hampered by booby-trapped buildings. ISIS ISF Major Cities Major Clash Armed Drones 6 7 A VBIED detonated in central Hit which resulted in the death of five individuals and injured nine others. 6 ISIS cut the water supply from reaching the area of Makhmur, located south of Mosul and controlled by the KRG. ISIS reportedly cut the water after the local government of Makhmur cut the electricity from Arab villages in the vicinity. Residents in Makhmur demonstrated for the restoration of services. 8 8 VBIED Iraq Situation Report: July 16, 2014 ISIS continues its offensive into Kurdish areas along Kirkuk City and along the Arab-Kurd contested Green Line along the Hamrin Ridge. ISIS’s attacks in Kirkuk escalated after July 9 when, according to security sources, ISIS conducted an armed parade of vehicles in the areas southwest of Kirkuk, demonstrating its military capabilities around the city. ISIS’s contest for Jalula, along the Hamrin Ridge, has been underway since the fall of Mosul. ISIS had engaged tribal elders in Jalula on July 8 in order to gain control of some Arab neighborhoods there through negotiation after a series of clashes with Peshmerga in previous weeks. ISW assesses that ISIS is conducting a deliberate campaign for Kurdish areas in Iraq, possibly to divert pressure by Peshmerga forces elsewhere and possibly to set conditions for further operations. ISIS continues to prioritize the Middle Euphrates. ISIS has likely designed the attack in Hit to set conditions for further attacks on Haditha or Ramadi by targeting local tribes and civilians. ISIS has so far failed to gain control of Haditha despite three attempts on the city by force as well as by negotiation. ISIS continues to leverage its ability to control water resources to put pressure on inhabited areas, cutting water to villages in Makhmur. ISIS has previously used its control of the Fallujah dam to deny water to Shi’a population centers and to flood parts of Baghdad. The ISF counteroffensive in Tikrit continued, though the fighting forces retreated tactically after encountering ISIS’s signature booby-trapped buildings. Iraqi Shi’a militias continue to be active in Baghdad as execution-style killings are again taking place in the city. Ansar al-Sunna 9 Airstrikes targeted a power station in Mosul University which rendered the station inoperable and injured 10 individuals. Also, an airstrike targeted the area of Rashediya, northwestern Mosul, which resulted in the death of two individuals and injured four others from one family. 9 Shi’a militias
  15. 15. by Ahmed Ali, ISW Iraq Team and Heather L. Pickerell 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha 7 5 1 6 9 3 4 8 2 Airstrikes Major Cities Major Clash Kidnapping Peshmerga ISIS ISF Shi’a militias Iraq Situation Report: July 17, 2014 The ISIS assault in Bashir, 30km south of Kirkuk city, continued with attacks upon Shi’a religious centers, shrines, and political party headquarters. These indicate the level of control ISIS has in the area. Furthermore, ISIS may be attempting to split Peshmerga forces along the extensive exposed border region between Sinjar and Jalula; it is, however, possible that ISIS will escalate attacks upon Kirkuk city if it achieves sustained control of Bashir. ISIS has also launched an attack upon COB Speicher west of Tikrit, seizing an airfield that was likely key to ISF aerial resupply and reinforcement in northern Iraq. The persistent effort by ISIS to establish control of Amerli, east of Tikrit suggests that ISIS means to weed out this pocket of resistance. The Sadrist Peace Brigades charged with the perimeter security of Samarra have reportedly launched operations in areas east of the city. Nevertheless, ISIS has wide operational presence to the east and west of Samarra; these ISIS elements are likely to continue their activities south of Samarra in the vicinity of Balad and Taji. ISIS may also be encroaching upon Ramadi from the west, indicating that they can flex among offensive efforts in Haditha, Hit, and Ramadi in order to maximize resources to take all three cities. Meanwhile, ISIS mortar fire in northern Baghdad and an IED factory south of Baghdad indicate the emergence of support zones in both areas. Continued reports of murdered civilians in Baghdad indicate the further pursuit of localized control by Shi’a militias within the capital. 6 Airstrikes targeted the water treatment plan in eastern Mosul which cut water supplies from reaching the eastern part of Mosul. ISIS published images yesterday of the workers fixing the pipes after they were damaged due to strikes. 7 Clashes continued for the second day near Tal al-Ward, southwestern Kirkuk, between ISIS militants and Peshmerga forces. So far, the clashes have resulted in the death of two Peshmerga members and injury of 53 others. 8 Security sources and eyewitnesses in Kirkuk reported that ISIS militants blew up several Shi’a religious centers, shrines, and political party headquarters in the village of Bashir, 30km south of the city of Kirkuk. 2IA Aviation targeted the Abu-Ajil Hospital, located east of Tikrit.The hospital reportedly houses wounded ISIS fighters. 3On July 16, ISIS fired mortar rounds for the third day on the Amerli sub-district east of Tikrit which resulted in the injury of “dozens” of the residents.This area has been surrounded by ISIS for 33 days and its local leader stated that the IA aviation drops 10% of the needed water and food supplies. The Sadrist Peace Brigades fighters reportedly launched operations in the Al-Rusafi, Al-Shwarib, and Al-Jalam areas in Samarra district. Sources indicate that the areas have been cleared of ISIS but that remains unconfirmed. 9 An attack targeted a Shi’a religious center in the Shorja neighborhood.There are conflicting reports that it was either an IED or an SVEST attack. Four unidentified bodies were found in Zaarafia, Ur, and Shula areas.Two mortar shells landed in the Sabaa al-Bur District in northern Baghdad. Unidentified gunmen kidnapped the imam of a mosque in the al-Baladiyat neighborhood in eastern Baghdad. An IED exploded near a Sahwa force checkpoint in the village of Albu Aitha, in Dora southern Baghdad. A force from the 1st Federal Police (FP) division discovered an IED-manufacturing plant in Kwerish District, southern Baghdad.The attacks resulted in the death of 8 people and injury of 29. 5 An anonymous tribal source stated that dozens of civilians fled their homes in the al-Tamim neighborhood, in western Ramadi, after militants took control of the area. Families reportedly fled to Hit and al-Baghdadi, west of Ramadi. 4 Heavy clashes took place at the southern entrance of Tikrit last night between IA and volunteers and ISIS. ISIS gunmen fired mortar rounds on Camp Speicher which damaged two helicopters. ISIS now reportedly controls a runway at the base after launching a wide attack on July 17. 1
  16. 16. by Ahmed Ali, ISW Iraq Team and Heather L. Pickerell 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha 8 3 6 5 9 1 2 10 Major Cities Major Clash ISIS ISF Shi’a militias Armed Drones Iraq Situation Report: July 18, 2014 ISIS is gaining momentum in the fight for Tikrit, with multiple reports of ISIS infiltration of COB Speicher and clashes in areas of the city where the ISF had previously established fixed positions. It is not yet clear whether the ISF will establish complete control over COB Speicher, but its loss would disrupt the ability of the ISF to reinforce and resupply northern positions. ISIS also continued to strike positions north of Balad airbase on the east and west of the river, south of the Samarra line. The bodies in the river near Samarra were most likely victims of Shi’a militias that are participating in the layered defense of Samarra; however ISIS controls areas such as Dour to the north of Samarra, and therefore attribution is uncertain. ISIS also clashed with the ISF, Shi’a militias, and popular forces in Amerli, Muqdadiyah, and northern Babil. Clashes in Amerli will indicate whether the ISF can withstand an ISIS siege. Clashes in Muqdadiyah will indicate whether the ISF can clear ISIS from an urban area and hold it. The departure of Christian families from Mosul indicates that ISIS is consolidating social control in part by encouraging population displacement of religious minorities. ISW notes that no major cities have changed hands between ISIS and the ISF since July 13, 2014, but attacks by ISIS and the ISF are ongoing on multiple fronts. 1 ISIS in Mosul gave Christian residents a deadline to depart the city by tomorrow or they would be killed. Dozens of Christian families already departed to areas southeast and north of Mosul. 2 Heavy clashes took place between ISIS and the ISF in Tikrit University.The university was previously recaptured by the ISF. 3A security force found 20 unidentified dead bodies floating in the Tigris near Samarra. 10 ISIS launched an attack on Dhuluiya from northwest of the city.The attack initiated clashes between tribal forces from the Jubur tribe, IP, and ISIS. An SVBIED targeted a Federal police (FP) checkpoint near the area of Mahatat Balad, located on the Baghdad-Mosul highway, northwest of Balad Airbase.The attacks resulted in the death of six FP members and the injury of three others. 9 The ISF, with the likely participation of Iraqi Shi’a militias, clashed with ISIS in the areas of Haruniya,Tawakul, and Nawfal, in the district of Muqdadiyah. Unconfirmed reports indicated that the areas were cleared by the ISF. Meanwhile, ISIS gunmen detonated IEDs on a bridge in Haruniya that connected Muqdadiyah to Khanaqin. 8 6 Heavy clashes took place between ISIS and security forces and volunteers in the areas of Seidat and Fariseya, northern Babil.The clashes resulted in the death of five volunteers and the injury of 10 others in addition to the death of 15 ISIS elements and the injury of an unspecified number of others who were evacuated by other ISIS members to an unknown location. The IA forces outside Fallujah continued shelling the city, which resulted in the death of 9 individuals and the injury of 19 others. 5 4 Dismounted gunmen from ISIS infiltrated COB Speicher in the early hours of the morning.The gunmen clashed with security forces inside the base and carried out at least one SVEST attack on IA helicopters, which damaged at least three of them. 4 SVEST Unknown Gunmen 7 7 ISIS launched an attack on the area of Amerli, south of Tuz Khurmatu, using automatic weapons, mortars, and hand grenades.The area is predominantly Iraqi Turkmen and is defended by the ISF, tribal forces, and forces from the Popular Mobilization that most likely include Iraqi Shi’a militias. Anti-Government Tribes V V VolunteersSVBIED Anti-ISIS Tribes
  17. 17. by Ahmed Ali, Kimberly Kagan, Jessica D. Lewis, and Nichole Dicharry 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha VBIED Peshmerga ISF ISIS Asayesh Armed Drones Major Clash Major Cities 3 5 2 1 4 Iraq Situation Report: July 19, 2014 ISIS’s VBIED command is active again, launching its first signature wave of Vehicle-Born Improvised Explosive Devices (VBIEDs) since the beginning of the Mosul offensive. The last VBIED wave occurred on May 13, 2014. VBIED waves, defined as six or more attacks on a single day, are the signature pattern of attacks that ISIS pursued as it gained strength in 2012 and 2013. The successful VBIEDs detonated in Baghdad’s Shi’a neighborhoods. This renewed capability is particularly significant because the ISF and Shi’a militia groups have deployed thickly through Baghdad, particularly in these Shi’a neighborhoods. The Shi’a militia group Asai’b Ahl al-Haq, for example, has been prominent in Abu Dashir since late 2012, for example. ISW assesses that ISIS intends to continue VBIED waves in Baghdad and elsewhere through the end of Ramadan. Meanwhile, ISIS has extended its campaign against primarily Kurdish-protected areas by attempting a complex attack in Sinjar using both a VBIED and a Suicide Vest. Sinjar, which has been quiet since Tal Afar fell, may become a more signifi- cant focus for ISIS as it attempts to complete its line of communication from Mosul, Iraq to ar-Raqqa, Syria. Events in Syria may also be driving the timing of this attack, as ISIS completed its military operation to connect its line of communication between its strongholds in ar-Raqqa and Deir ez-Zour. ISIS continued its campaign for social and religious control in Mosul. After driving out Christians yesterday, ISIS imposed further measures on rents, marriages, and female dress. ISIS and the ISF continued their fight for areas outside of Muqdadiya, which an anonymous source prematurely reported yesterday as having been cleared by Iraqi forces. 1 Peshmerga forces stationed in Sinjar stopped a VBIED driven by a person wearing an SVEST before he was able to detonate either one.The event occurred near the Tal Banat residential complex south of Sinjar.This follows reported clashes between the Peshmerga and ISIS in Sinjar on July 17 and recent targeting of Tal Banat with mortars.The Tal Banat complex is reportedly home to Yazidis and IDPs from Tal Afar. 2 A member of the Iraqi Kurdish security force known as Asayesh was injured when an IED targeted his house in the Askari neighborhood in southern Kirkuk. His brother was also injured in the attack. 3Clashes continued between ISF and ISIS in the Tawakul, Nawfal, and Sudur areas near Muqdadiyah. Six Vehicle-Born Improvised Explosive Devices (VBIEDs) exploded in five neighborhoods in Baghdad city.The VBIEDs exploded in Jihad in southwestern Baghdad; Kadhmiyah in northern Baghdad near a Shi’a religious center; in al-Bayaa in southwestern Baghdad, in the Ilam neighborhood; the Abu Dashir area in the Dora neighborhood, in southern Baghdad, targeting an ISF checkpoint; and in the Saydiyah neighborhood. Casualty figures from the attacks range between 70 to over 90 killed or injured. 5 ISIS religious and judicial bodies in Ninewa issued decrees specifying the amount of rent to be charged for property, forbade marriages outside its courts, and forbade clothing stores from selling women’s gowns that are “tight, transparent, or embroidered.” 4
  18. 18. by Ahmed Ali, Kimberly Kagan, and Aaron Reese 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha Airstrikes 8 3 6 5 1 2 Major Cities ISIS ISF Shi’a militias Armed Drones Iraq Situation Report: July 20, 2014 The situation in the vicinity of Baghdad continues to intensify. ISIS has emplaced IEDs in places such as Mada’in, Yusifiyah, and Mahmudiyah in the southern belts of Baghdad. ISIS has previously conducted IED or suicide attacks in these three locations. ISIS may use these locations as possible avenues of approach if it decides to attack Baghdad from the southern belt of the city. ISIS may also be attempting to restrict the ISF’s mobility corridors in those areas. Iraqi Shi’a militia executions inside Baghdad may increase in response to the VBIED wave in Shi’a neighborhoods on 19 July. Kidnapping and reprisal killings will cause major concern for Iraqi Sunni civilians in the city. The deployment of volunteers from southern Iraq to Kirkuk province signifies the spread of their role to protect shrines in areas where ISIS is making advances. The reallocation of Iraqi Security Forces from Baghdad to Dhuluiya signals the real challenge that ISIS poses there. ISW has assessed that ISIS may try to draw the ISF out of Baghdad in advance of more robust attacks there. 1 Four airstrikes reportedly targeted the Wihda neighborhood in eastern Mosul and the Jawsaq neighborhood in southwestern Mosul.The strikes resulted in the injury of 9 people and destruction of 12 houses. 3 Sources from the Fallujah hospital reported that 15 people were killed, including women and children, when shelling targeted various neighborhoods in Fallujah. 20-27 were injured in the attacks. According to the sources, the shelling included mortars, barrel bombs, and rockets. 2 Iraqi Security Forces reportedly sent reinforcements from Baghdad to the Dhuluiya area, north of Baghdad, to shore up the defenses of the anti-ISIS tribes and forces in the area. According to reports, ISIS is now based in the areas of Kbeba in the east and Khazraj and Bajwari in the north of the area. ISIS is reportedly targeting Dhuluiya from these areas. An IED detonated in the Mada’in area resulting in the death of 3 civilians and injury of five civilians. 8 6 An IED targeted a police patrol in the Yusifiyah area, south of Baghdad.Two policemen were killed while five were injured. Three people were killed and three people were injured when “multiple mortar rounds” landed in the Mahmudiyah area, south of Baghdad. 5 4 Security forces discovered four unidentified bodies in the neighborhoods of Amal, Shaab, and Bayaa. 4 7 7 A Katyusha rocket landed in the Taza area, 20 km south of Kirkuk resulting in the injury of nine people from the same family. Meanwhile, 200 volunteers from southern Iraq arrived in Kirkuk.The volunteers flew from the Najaf airport in southern Iraq to Sulaimaniyah’s airport and will be assigned to protect the Imam Zain al-Abdin Bin Ali shrine in Daquq which is located approximately 40 km south of Kirkuk. V V Volunteers Anti-ISIS Tribes
  19. 19. by Ahmed Ali, ISW Iraq Team and Heather L. Pickerell 100km Fallujah Baqubah As Sulaymaniyah ArbilMosul Basra An Nasriyah An Najaf Karbala Al Kut Ar Ramadi Samarra Tikrit Kirkuk Baghdad Dahuk Al Amarah Al Hillah Ad Diwaniyah Muqdadiyah Samawa Rutba Qaim Haditha Armed Drones Major Clash Iraq Situation Report: July 21, 2014 5 A security source in Diyala stated that clashes occurred between Ansar al-Sunna elements and ISIS elements in al-Asaker area, north of Sadia in northeastern Diyala Province.The clashes resulted in the death of six Ansar al-Sunna members and five ISIS fighters. 5 6 4 2 1 3 Major Cities ISIS ISF Shi’a militias V Volunteers Ansar al-Sunna Airstrikes 6 Security sources in Salah ad-Din Province stated that at least three mortar rounds landed on the volunteer headquarters located in Bank Street of central Samarra City. Other sources, however, claimed that the rounds fell approximately 60-70 meters from the Al-Askari Shrine.Twenty volunteers were injured as a result of the attacks. V 4 According to Lieutenant General Rashid Fleih, commander of the Anbar Operations Command (AOC), the ISF launched operations in al-Garma (east of Fallujah), al-Nuaimiya (south of Fallujah), and ISIS bases in Saqlawiyah (north of Fallujah). A source in Hawijah stated that 10 people were killed and 20 were wounded after IA Aviation targeted a residential area in central Hawijah. A source added that these areas contain the ISIS Shari’a courts. 2 ISIS published images of military training it is carrying out in Ninewa for “volunteers.”The photos show training that includes religious lessons and introduction to light weaponry. Some trainees are dressed in Afghan- style garments and children and youth are shown receiving training as well. 1 3 ISIS published images of its forces distributing flour to families in al-Qaim. Those receiving the flour are described as “poor families.” The Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) continues to consolidate its governance presence in Mosul and western Iraq. This state of affairs contradicts reports that ISIS is ceding power in Mosul to other armed groups including the Ba’athist JRTN. On the other hand, Diyala continues to be the front line where ISIS continues to vie for power with other groups. These dynamics and competition will continue to be manifested as events unfold. It is difficult to confirm the veracity that ISIS is distributing aid to“poor families”in Qaim. It is clear, however, that ISIS propaganda seeks to portray it as an organization that is responsive to local needs. It will be important to watch the effect of this strategy on the population’s response. The Iraqi Security Forces’(ISF) multiple and repeated attempts in the last seven months to regain parts of Anbar are indicative of the difficulties the ISF will face in retaking bigger urban centers such as Mosul and Tikrit. Nonetheless, the ISF are likely launching these operations to prevent ISIS from taking control of Ramadi and Haditha in Anbar province.
  20. 20. Institute for the Study of War 1400 16th Street, NW Suite #515 Washington, DC 20036 +1.202.293.5550, Ext. 205 Press@UnderstandingWar.org For more, visit: www.understandingwar.org

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