A total of 386 Iraqi civilians were killed and another 1,066 were injured in acts of terrorism, violence and armed conflict in Iraq in December 2016*, according to casualty figures recorded by the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI).
The number of civilians killed in December (not including police) was 385, while the number injured (not including police) was 1,060.
Ninewa was the worst affected Governorate with 719 civilian casualties with 208 killed and 511 injured. Baghdad followed with 109 killed and 523 injured, and Kirkuk had 64 killed and 27 injured.
UNAMI was not able to obtain civilian casualty figures from the Anbar Health Department for this month.
“Though the figures for December are lower than previous months, we are nevertheless noticing an increase in terrorist bombings towards the end of the month and in the last couple of days, targeting civilians”, Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for Iraq (SRSG) Ján Kubiš said.
“This is, no doubt, an attempt by Daesh to divert attention from their losses in Mosul and, unfortunately, it is the innocent civilians who are paying the price”, he added.
In 2016, UNAMI recorded a total of 19,266 civilian casualties: 6,878 killed and 12,388 wounded. These casualty figures do not include the civilian casualty figures for Anbar for the months of May, July, August and December.
*CAVEATS: In general, UNAMI has been hindered in effectively verifying casualties in conflict areas; in some cases, UNAMI could only partially verify certain incidents. UNAMI has also received, without being able to verify, reports of large numbers of casualties along with unknown numbers of persons who have died from secondary effects of violence after having fled their homes due to exposure to the elements, lack of water, food, medicines and health care. Since the start of the military operations to retake Mosul and other areas in Ninewa, UNAMI has received several reports of incidents involving civilian casualties, which at times it has been unable to verify. For these reasons, the figures reported have to be considered as the absolute minimum.
(Source: United Nations News Centre)