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Iraq: Security & Humanitarian News for the Week Ending April 5, 2018

Key Takeaways:
report compiled by ISHM
  • Reports Conflict on PKK Presence in Sinjar - On April 1, Fahad Amir Omar, head of Sinjar District, confirmed that Iraqi Security Forces, including the Iraqi Army, Popular Mobilization Units, and local police are deployed throughout the district and along the road to the Syrian border. Omar stated that there are no Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) elements in the city. Two days later, Haydar Qasim Shesho, leader of the Yazidi Protection Force, said that more than 500 PKK fighters have not yet left Sinjar and suggested that they are embedded with PMUs. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that the Turkish army “may enter Sinjar at any time” if the PKK presence continues, although the Iraqi government is also committed to ousting the U.S.-identified terrorist organization.  more...
  • Abadi Rejects Peshmerga Redeployments to the Disputed Territories - On March 29, Secretary-General of the Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga Ministry, Jabar Yawar, told NRT that he met with a delegation from the U.S.-led international coalition, and that the coalition expressed support for a return of Peshmerga forces to the disputed territories in Kirkuk and Ninewa Provinces. Rumors then spread across various outlets that the Peshmerga were being redeployed to Kirkuk, some suggesting that it was with U.S. support. Major General Maan al-Saadi, head of security in Kirkuk Province, denied the reports saying that “the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces [Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi] did not give the green light in this regard and he did not agree to it.” On April 5, spokesman for Operation Inherent Resolve, U.S. Army Colonel Ryan Dillon, tweeted that “there are erroneous reports that claim [OIR] has confirmed/directed movement of forces in northern Iraq. DON’T BELIEVE IT. The Government of Iraq is the SOLE authority regarding deployment of forces within Iraq. Full Stop.” Shortly thereafter, Yawar acknowledged during a press conference that the return of Peshmerga forces to the disputed territories would require Baghdad’s approval.  more...
  • Council of Ministers Approves Five Year National Development Plan - The Council of Ministers approved a five-year National Development Plan for Iraq (2018-2022) which seeks to promote private sector development, provincial reconstruction, and poverty alleviation. The plan projects an economic growth rate of 7%, which would coincide with a nearly US$ 100 billion increase in GDP over the five year period. The oil industry would account for nearly 60% of projected foreign investment.  more...
  • Electronic Voting Machines Prepared Ahead of May Elections - The Independent High Electoral Commission is prepared to deploy an electronic vote counting system contracted to a South Korean company at a cost of US$ 97 million, ahead of May elections. The 59 thousand vote-counting devices will be distributed to 54 thousand polling stations throughout Iraq. More than 300 thousand employees will conduct the election and be trained on the use of the devices.  more...
  • Abadi Visits Japan to Solicit Investments - Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi visited Japan on a two-day visit intended to “boost bilateral cooperation, open investment horizons,” and entertain new ideas for job creation and vocational training for Iraqi citizens. During the visit, Abadi discussed a deal with Toyota-Tshuho Corporation to construct fixed and mobile power stations in Muthanna and Maysan provinces, which may help alleviate electricity production problems that plague the country.  more...
Derived from firsthand accounts and Iraq-based Arabic and Kurdish news sources, the Iraq Security and Humanitarian Monitor is a free publication of the Education for Peace in Iraq Center. 

Share us with a friend. The full report for March 30 - April 5, 2018 is available now at: www.epic-usa.org/ishm155

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