ISHM: June 24 - July 1, 2021

News and Press Release
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Key Takeaways:

  • PMF Show Off Weapons Arsenal; Leaders Of Egypt, Jordan Discuss Strategic Cooperation With Iraq; Airstrikes Intensify Calls To Withdraw U.S. Troops – On June 26, the PMF organized a show-of-force parade featuring tanks, armored personnel carriers, rocket launchers, and drones, marking the organization’s 7th anniversary. On June 27, Baghdad hosted a trilateral summit in which the leaders of Iraq, Jordan and Egypt discussed strategic cooperation and regional political and security issues. On June 28, Foreign Ministers of the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS met in Rome and discussed ongoing operations to prevent the group’s resurgence. On June 28, Iraq condemned U.S. airstrikes on a facility used by Iran-backed militia groups in Anbar, calling the attack a “violation of national sovereignty.” The PMF and allied political parties called for an immediate withdrawal of foreign troops. On June 29, the Iraqi Electricity Minister submitted his resignation following a sharp decline in generation capacity and rising temperatures. On June 30, PM Kadhimi met with NATO officials in Brussels, and asked them to continue their assistance in training and advising the Iraqi security forces. more…

  • Attacks Target Power Infrastructure Amid Scorching Heat; Drones Strike Erbil; U.S. Airstrikes Target Structures Used By Iran-Backed Militias – Between June 24 – 29, ISIS militants targeted several Federal Police checkpoints in southern Kirkuk and Salah ad-Din, killing at least six policemen and injuring nine others. Between June 26 – July 1, at least six IED explosions and a rocket attack toppled power towers and damaged other electricity infrastructure, causing major service disruptions in Kirkuk, Salah ad-Din and Diyala. On June 26, four drones struck a residential area in Erbil. KRG authorities said that recovered drone parts had verbiage referencing Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis and Iranian General Qasim Soleimani. On June 28, U.S. airstrikes targeted structures near the borders with Syria used by Iran-backed militias to launch drone attacks on U.S. facilities in Iraq. The strikes killed four militiamen from Kataib Sayyid al-Shuhada. On June 30, an IED exploded in the busy Mredi market in Sadr City, injuring 15 people. more…

  • Kurdistan Court Rejects Another Appeal To Free Jailed Journalists; Iraq Reports Sharp Increase In COVID-19 Infections – On June 27, Iraq said that it received $50 million in donations to preserve ISIS-destroyed archaeological sites in Ninewa, Anbar, and Diyala. On June 27, Kurdistan’s Court of Cassation denied a request to consider the appeal of five journalists and activists sentenced to six years in prison. UNAMI condemned the court’s decision, and called for judicial and institutional reform in the KRI. On June 28, Iraq’s Education Ministry and the WFP agreed to expand Iraq’s nationwide school-meal program to reach 3.6 million children by 2025. On June 28, the U.S. Supreme Court declined an appeal from defense contractor CACI in a torture lawsuit filed by three Iraqi ex-detainees of Abu Ghraib prison, upholding a lower court ruling in favor of the victims. On July 1, Iraq’s Health Ministry said the total number of COVID-19 infections reached 1,353,458. The average number of new cases jumped to 6,052 per day during the last 7-day period, up from an average of 5,209 per day during the 7-day period ending June 24. The number of vaccinated people reached 910,641. more…

  • Iraq, Egypt and Jordan To Increase Economic Cooperation; Basra Gas Co. Eyes Higher Production, Reduced Flaring And Emissions; June Oil Exports Generate $6.1 Billion – On June 24, Iraq signed a contract with the UAE-based renewable energy company Masdar to generate 2,000 megawatts of solar power. The project will provide over 2,000 jobs. On June 27, leaders of Iraq, Jordan and Egypt discussed economic cooperation during a summit in Baghdad, and agreed to jumpstart and initiate several energy projects, ease non-tariff barriers to trade, and establish joint e-commerce channels. On July 29, Iraq’s Basra Gas Company signed a five-year, $360 million loan agreement with the International Finance Corporation to reduce gas flaring in southern Iraq and expand production by 40%. On July 1, the Iraqi Ministry of Oil said that crude oil exports during June totaled 86.765 million barrels, for an average of 2.892 bpd. The June exports generated $6.141 billion in revenue. more…

For more background on most of the institutions, key actors, political parties, and locations mentioned in our takeaways or in the stories that follow, see the ISHM Reference Guide.