ISIS attacks Iraqi Federal Police checkpoint in Kirkuk, killing policemen

ISIS attacked an Iraqi Federal Police checkpoint in Kirkuk, killing thirteen officers. In Maxmur city, a civilian was kidnapped by the terrorist organization.

Thirteen police officers were killed in an attack by ISIS in the city of Kirkuk. Jihadists attacked an Iraqi Federal Police checkpoint south of Kirkuk on Sunday night, security authorities said. The attack lasted several hours, according to the statement.

Civilian kidnapped in Maxmur

Meanwhile, a kidnapping by the self-proclaimed ISIS has been reported from Maxmur. According to reports, the victim is a resident of the village of Lakce, who was in the village of Kurdîbur at the time of the kidnapping. Four weeks ago, five people were kidnapped in the district southwest of Hewlêr (Erbil) when they were caught in an ambush disguised as an Iraqi army checkpoint. Four people managed to escape by running away, while three were injured by gunfire. So far, only two of those kidnapped have been released.

ISIS still active

ISIS had overrun large parts of Iraq and Syria in 2014 and declared a "caliphate." By 2019, the Islamists had been repelled and largely defeated militarily. However, cell structures of the militia remain active in both countries. In the former heartland in northern Iraq, they regularly carry out attacks against Iraqi security forces. However, attacks are also occurring with increasing frequency in the south of the country and in central Iraq, often directed against civilian infrastructure.

Increasingly frequent incidents in Maxmur

The terrorist organization's activities are also intensifying in the Maxmur area which houses a refugee camp with almost 13,000 residents. Most of them are people from northern Kurdistan whose villages were burned down by the Turkish state in the 1990s. About three to four kilometers from Maxmur ISIS is Mount Qereçox. On the eastern slope is an ISIS base to which jihadists withdrew from northern and eastern Syria after the military victory over the militia in spring 2019. Estimates put the number of mercenaries on Qereçox at around 150, who are also targeting the refugee camp. Although Peshmerga from the Southern Kurdistan Regional Government and Iraqi security forces opened a joint security operations coordination center in Maxmur as recently as last May, the jihadists often operate largely unrestricted.

The Maxmur Camp is also repeatedly attacked by Turkey. Just last Friday, a drone attack left a woman injured.