Explosive Violence: June 2012
Multiple IED attacks in Iraq
On 4 June in the centre of Baghdad, a car filled with explosives was detonated outside the office of the Shiite Endowment—the government-affiliated body responsible for managing Shiite cultural and religious sites in Iraq. The powerful blast killed 26 and injured nearly 200 civilians in the area.4 Iraq has consistently been one of the most dangerous countries for explosive violence according to data collected by the EVMP. In June, the EVMP recorded 1,144 civilian casualties of explosive violence in Iraq. This was more than three times the average monthly number of civilian casualties in Iraq recorded during 2012. It is also the most reported civilian casualties from explosive weapons in a single month in Iraq since the EVMP began recording such casualties in October 2010.
The vast majority of the civilian casualties recorded in Iraq in June were caused by IEDs. Car bombs like the one used in the attack on the Shiite Endowment were particularly destructive and were responsible for 63% of the reported civilian casualties of explosive violence in Iraq. However, manufactured explosive weapons were also used to kill civilians. On one occasion two mortar bombs struck a square in the north of Baghdad where pilgrims had gathered ahead of a religious festival. Seven civilians were killed and 38 wounded in this attack on 10 June.5 Many of the attacks in Iraq killed and injured pilgrims either at places of worship or as they gathered in populated areas.
On the morning of 13 June, 283 civilians were reportedly killed and injured in a wave of at least 15 separate IED explosions across the country. Car bombs and roadside bombs were detonated outside restaurants, markets, and public processions in several major cities. One car bomb which exploded in an impoverished neighbourhood in Baghdad destroyed makeshift housing in the area, forcing displaced residents to sleep in the grounds of a nearby shrine.6 Jihad Hussein, who had built his own house for his family over eight years, said that he had lost his job as a result of the explosion and now cannot afford to rent a new home.