ASIA China (Security threat level – 3): On 23 November...
This week in Iraq violence levels rose above average, with 224 violent incidents reported. The majority of violence was related to criminality or tribalism, occurring mostly in Eastern Baghdad. There was a high rate of grenade attacks (five in total), though analysis of these incidents suggests they were all unrelated. A rise in body finds was also recorded. Most bore characteristics accordant to criminality, such as the gender of the victim being female, or strangulation as the cause of death. However, there were several murders that may have been related to sectarianism, involving male victims bearing gunshot wounds. It is most probable that this week’s spike in body finds is incidental, rather than indicative of a more sustained period of sectarianism. Sectarian killings are likely to remain infrequent in Baghdad, and certainly an uncontrollable surge in body finds is implausible. There were no high-profile attacks recorded, almost certainly because of an increase in security for the Eid al Ghadeer festival. As this security draws down, isolated high-profile attacks can be expected to resume.
Find out more in our Iraq Weekly Insight report.