ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The Iraqi Interior Ministry on Friday evening announced the confiscation of a military store containing a number of missiles and shells.
The armaments confiscated included 17 missiles and six Austrian-made mortar shells, according to an announcement.
The ministry did not offer further details about which group the cache may have belonged to but noted that an intelligence unit of Iraqi federal police discovered it in the disputed province of Kirkuk's Attariya district, near the border with Diyala. The territory was once a stronghold of the Islamic State after it emerged in 2014.
Several people were killed and injured on Thursday when a suicide bomber exploded his vest at a busy market in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad, the Iraqi military said in a previous statement. According to Baghdad Operations Command, the attacker detonated his explosive vest in the Jameela marketplace in the northeastern Sadr City neighborhood. On early Friday, the Islamic State announced it was responsible for the bombing.
Also on Thursday, Iraq said it plans to arm citizens in 50 villages near the northern city of Mosul so they can protect themselves. The announcement was made by Brigadier-General Najm al-Jabouri, head of Nineveh Operations Command, the Anadolu Agency reported.
“Following a meeting with local tribal chiefs, the army chief-of-staff decided to arm residents of 50 villages near Mosul to allow them to defend themselves against possible terrorist attacks,” Jabouri said.
Iraq declared a military victory against the group in late 2017, but its remnants continue to launch insurgent attacks, ambushes, kidnappings, and explosions across the country, mainly in the provinces of Nineveh, Kirkuk, Diyala, Salahuddin, and Anbar.
Editing by John J. Catherine