Thursday, October 02, 2014

Iraq: UN reports at least 1,119 killed in September; actual figure likely higher

Iraqis fleeing from militants earlier in 2014. The number of Iraqis now seeking refuge in Jordan and Turkey is rising. Photo: UNHCR/E. Colt

At least 1,119 Iraqis – most of them civilians – were killed in August, the United Nations in the country today reported, but cautioned that the figure does not include people killed in the ongoing operation in Anbar, or those who died from the heat or hunger after being forced to flee violence in their cities.

The UN Assistance Mission (UNAMI) has received, but been unable 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,” according to a statement.

As a result, the figures presented should be considered an “absolute minimum,” according to the Mission.

Of those numbers, at least 854 people were civilians and 265 members of the Iraqi security forces.

The worst affected Governorate was Baghdad, where 352 people were killed and 983 injured.

An additional 1,604 Iraq civilians were injured in acts of terrorism and violence during the month. A further 342 people were injured.

In a Security Council meeting last month, the 15 Members strongly condemned attacks by terrorist organizations including the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), and urged UN Member States to assist the Iraqi Government’s efforts to combat militants and implement its new political agenda.

Also that day, Nickolay Mladenov, head of UNAMI briefed the Council on behalf of Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, stressing that Iraq’s new Government will need international support as it works to restore security to large parts of the country.