Report on Status of Iraq
Government War Crimes in Anbar Province
by Dr. Al Darraji
February 17, 2014
This is a report generated by Iraqi sources and compiled by Dr. Al Darraji on the case of Fallujah, Iraq. It is not the work of the publisher. It was translated by Omar Abdel-Ghaffar.
Government War Crimes in Anbar ProvinceReport by the Conservation Center of Environmental & Reserves in Fallujah (CCERF): Fallujah Case Study
Fallujah � Iraq1. Introduction
Since the start of the peaceful sit-ins of December 2012, numerous peaceful protests have sprung up and spread in the Sunni Iraqi provinces against the sectarian political system, and the continued violation of human rights by the repressive Maliki forces. Instead of negotiating the legal, legitimate demands of the protesters, the Maliki regime conducted a brutal crackdown on the protests, the brutality increasing gradually with time. The number of arbitrary mass arrests increased with a parallel increase in killings in an attempt to exterminate the protesters. This was especially evident in the three consecutive crimes that took place at the beginning of 2013, where protesters were gathered in the cities of al Huwayja, Fallujah, an Mosul. Maliki�s regime justified its policy with the excuse of fighting terrorism, then declared that the demands of the protesters were legitimate, only to go back to declare war on terrorism, a war that in reality is a war against those who oppose that regime and its sectarian government.
The Kurdish Coalition considered the DAISH (Dawlat al Islam fi al Iraq wal Sham, "The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant") question to be more of a political fabrication than a terrorist reason, Mr. Shuwan Muhammad Taha, a representative on behalf of the Kurdish Coalition, in an interview with Sumeria News, accusing I�itilaf Dawlat al Qanun (Rule of Law Coalition) of calling all of those who oppose it on the DAISH question terrorists (19). The policies of political marginalization and persecution have reached the representatives of Maliki� MPs, when they accusing their colleagues within Parliament of being DAISHIs. A representative for I�itilaf Dawlat al Qanun, Mr. Muhammad Sadoun al Seyhud claimed that the political parties that refused to be present under the Parliamentary Dome to approve the new budget were all "DAISHi"
Now, increasingly the fact of genocide plan with increasing such statements that call for genocide under the pretext of terrorism, according to an Iraqi newspaper term lawmakers (Mada) said on the MPs of Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, said there was no part in Anbar valid to be as party in a dialogue with the government, and that raises the political initiatives not only serve the terrorists. Mr. Hussein Saffi (MP in Dawa party) in a statement to this newspaper "pointing out that military effort is the only solution to end the crisis in Anbar, rejecting calls for dialogue advocated by some political sides, wondering "dialogue with whom?", and added," No political party in Anbar even talk with them, they are a group of terrorists, and any trying to confuse it supports terrorism"(30).
Before the military operations in the province of al Anbar began, Maliki declared that large units would be directed to go to Anbar desert, especially the Houran Valley, with a lot of troops from the rest of the provinces, in order to combat terrorism and the terrorist groups that he claims have arrived from Syria!!. But, after the operations began in Anbar Desert, he changed the redirected all of his troops to the cities of Al Ramadi and Fallujah in a clear act of sectarian-based extermination. Repressive policies like these were the main motivation for the uprising in the first place, in addition to the general public refusing to ignore the existence the crimes of his unconstitutional private forces, SWAT. The military operations began on Maliki�s part when he, with the use of the military, arrested an MP, Mr. Ahmed Al-Alwani and assassinated his brother and his sister-in-law. Immediately afterwards, he ordered attacks on the protesters in the square in Al Rumadi, in order to make sure that the protests would not remain peaceful, and that it would turn into a sectarian conflict, one which he could manipulate to his advantage in the election of April 2014. Since December 22, the Maliki government has been carrying out an operation in the Anbar desert under the banner of fighting the terrorist groups that are hiding there, but it soon became clear that it was a widespread, armed attack directed at the residential areas in Rumadi and Fallujah, with random bombing of buildings using heavy artillery, tanks, and air strikes.
Unfortunately, the Security Council�s declaration of support for the Maliki war on terror has not taken into consideration the deadly attacks carried out against innocent Sunnis, and the opposition in general. This grossly inappropriate reaction on the part of the international community is the result of the UNAMI failing to bring accurately relate the humanitarian crisis and genocide crimes by the Mailiki� regime�s operations. Evidence of the corruption and deliberate cover-up on the part of the UNAMI in favor of the Maliki� regime can be seen in its disregard for human rights, as shown in the delay in the periodical reports of the human rights situation in Iraq. This report originally was released every three months, then every six months, and now it is released only once a year, making it not as accurate of an analysis. The UNAMI has also failed to take any action by invitation the Special Rapporteurs of human rights to Iraqi for investigate the mass crimes and violations of Maliki� regime, despite the numerous reports that expose his brutality and repression.
The continuing genocidal policies against the Sunnis in Iraq motivated a member of the European Parliament, Mr. Struan Stevenson, who heads the European Parliament Committee on Relations with Iraq, to say that "Iraq is regressing quickly to a state of civil war and ethnic cleansing." His point is made even clearer through the televised speeches by Maliki, in which he threatens the protesters, and, with sectarian language, encourages supporters to aid him in his struggle against the residents of Anbar.
In the midst of this political drama, the residents of Anbar and Fallujah have been forced to take action in order to protect themselves from the very real threat that the Maliki forces pose. Self-defense of course, is a right that has been enshrined in all Divine and human-made legal codes, and is a necessity for the inhabitants of these provinces in the face of the criminal policies of this sectarian government.
The dangerous situation of systematic targeting against the residents of Anbar, especially those in the cities of Al Rumadi, Fallujah, al Karmah, and al Khalidiyah, in addition to the government�s decision to cut off all humanitarian aid to those cities as well as nearby cities which host thousands of refugees, all confirm the policy of sectarian extermination which many international politicians and analysts have warned of. The inhuman cruelty of the attacks carried out by the Maliki regime demands the international community�s immediate intervention in order to stop the massacres mentioned in this report, keeping in mind that the population of Fallujah and its nearby towns adds up to 650,000 civilians.
2. Crimes of Genocide and Collective Punishments Against Civilians
Since the start of the military operations in Fallujah on 22 Dec. 2013, the indiscriminate bombing of the city targeted all aspects of life within it. The residents of Fallujah have accused the Maliki government of murdering their children by bombing schools and demolishing mosques and homes (22,10,23). The victims of the Iraqi forces� artillery, which are centered in Mazra�a Camp near Fallujah, have confirmed that many bombs fell on their houses in the morning, while families were having breakfast, injuring numerous women and children in the village of Sbeyhat (the city of Karma) near Fallujah (4). An elderly man (living in the area of Jubeil) who was injured upon exiting the taxi-cab that had taken him to the city from Baghdad, claimed that the military had opened fire on him meters after he left the area which they controlled. He was transported to the hospital with life-threatening wounds and a critical state of shock (6).
The family of a young girl who was shot during a battle in the Na�imiyah area of the city confirmed that the conflict has forced all the residents to flee, and that the regime�s forces targeted families attempting to return to their homes (7). Eye-witnesses and citizens related to victims in the city of Karmah have released a video of panicking orphaned children whose orphanage had been bombed and reduced to rubble (9). Towards the end of January 2014, Liqaa Wardi, an MP accused the Maliki government of failing to fulfill its promise of stopping the bombing of Fallujah and other cities in the south of Anbar, claiming that over 15 rockets had been fired in the different areas of city. Wardi said in an interview with Sumeria News that the central government has not stood by its promise of ceasing the shelling in Falluja city, where 15 rockets and mortars were dropped in the areas of Na�imiyah, Buwahwy, and Jamilah, south of Qadaa, resulting in many casualties, including a female refugee who was living in a school (15).
Another witness was Mr. Hmed al-Isawy, aged 32, who was a assistant in a high school in Amriya, Fallujah. He recalled for us that on January 28, 2014, government forces bombed the Buwahwy area, near Fallujah, and blew up several houses, and killed livestock, as can be seen in the images attached below. This incident has been confirmed also by Ms. Aum Jamal, when she was present with her family displaced from Fallujah, in a mosque at this area when the shells rained down on as indiscriminate shelling on the area, many residents rushed to her children rescued by smuggled with the families of the other car out of the danger zone. She has been displaced from her house in Fallujah ( neighborhood Ressala) out of Fallujah because of the indiscriminate shelling on Fallujah, and fear for her children life (32).
2. 1. Statistics Regarding the Victims of Shelling in Residential Areas
The chief of the Residing Physicians in General Fallujah Hospital, Dr Ahmed Shami Jassem, spoke to us about the number of victims as of January 27th 2014, saying there were 313 severely wounded civilians (amongst them 31 children, 31 women). The number of dead is 59 martyrs (amongst them 10 children and 4 women). He added that bullets caused most of the wounds during the first three days of the operation, which proves that military tried to force their way into the neighborhoods of the city. This contrasts with the wounds that he treated after January 3rd 2014, which were caused by shrapnel due to the indiscriminate shelling of the city and its homes (2).
We were able to find an official medical document that confirms that the number of civilian casualties in Fallujah since the beginning of the military operation by the Maliki Regime on December 30 2013 up until February 5th 2014 is 452 victims. Of them, 69 have died, and 383 were wounded. Of the wounded, 40 were children and 39 were women, and amongst the dead 10 were children and 4 were women (12). While another medical sources in Fallujah said the number of martyrs reached 85, while the wounded had exceeded the 400 injured, mostly children, women and the elderly (30).
2.2. Eye-Witness Accounts of the Indiscriminate Shelling
Many satellite television channels have tried to relay to the public the indiscriminate shelling against the civilians in the city of Fallujah (18). Below, we have excerpts of some cases and eyewitness accounts of victims and their families as following:
1) According to documentary films passed on a satellite channel and workers in place mortuary in General Hospital, has killed two families of six members were eating their dinner during the fall of the shell on them in the house the night of January 23 to 24, 2014, as the wounded wife one and remained the daughter of one of them the only survivor of the accident and the accompanying image her name is Ayat Mohammed Fayyad (10 years old) , note that the incident occurred in the neighborhood of Nazzal (5) .
2) Lamiaa (25 year-old) spoke to us about one of her female relatives who lay beside her in the Intensive Care Unit of the Fallujah hospital. She said that her house was targeted with mortars and heavy artillery, fired at them from the Na�imiya Police Station during the government forces� attack on the residential neighborhood. Her relative said that she was shot in the head, and surgeons had to intervene in order to remove the shrapnel from her head and she currently is bed-ridden and is in critical condition (1).
3) A young girl (Assile Jaber Hamid Ghatran) (aged 14), she was wounded by shrapnel in her neck, the upper right side of her body, and the lower left side of her body, as can be seen in the picture below.
4) The girl (Adian Omar) from al Dubbat District, aged 4 months, was wounded on the evening of January 24th 2014 due to a mortar landing on her relative�s house. A window near her fell upon her, severely wounding her head, as can be seen in the images attached below.
5) The young girl (Fatima Thamir Hamid) (11 years old) was wounded by shrapnel on her left hand, as can be seen in the image below.
6) Documented information has reached us from medical sources regarding the civilians who arrived in the Fallujah hospital on January 30th, 2014. Their images can be seen below, and they are:
7) Amongst the tragic stories that have been relayed to us is the story of Abu Muhammad al Falluji (Ali al Halbusi) who lies today in the Intensive Care Unit in one of Erbil�s hospitals, capital of the semiautonomous territory of Kurdistan. He has been in a situation between life and death for two weeks now, and he does not know that he has lost two of his children due to shelling by the military. The family claims that the shelling occurred on the Nazzal neighborhood in the center of Fallujah, and the shell fell upon his house, which he refused to abandon, due to his belief that maybe a diplomatic solution would solve the Anbar Crisis. In an interview with Mada press, Karim Hassan al Halbousi, the victim�s relative, said "Abu Muhammad, who is 53 years old, was an officer�s assistant in the former military. After the dissolution of the military, he worked as a cab driver in a car owned by his brother. Al Halbousi added that "He provided for three children, two of them are boys in middle schools. The lone survivor is a girl whose engagement to her cousin was supposed to be announced but had to be postponed due to the conflict. An eyewitness clarified to us that he, on "Wednesday morning (January 15th 2014) issued a warning about the number of casualties due to the density of the bombings. One of these stray bombs fell upon Abu Muhammad�s kitchen while the family was having breakfast." He remarks that "The mortar resulted in the destruction of the entrance of the house and prevented neighbors from saving Abu Muhammad�s family, except after a lengthy struggle which involved not only direct neighbors, but people from all over the Nazzal neighborhood." He added that the event resulted in the immediate death of Abu Muhammad�s two sons, and in his own injury, in addition to resulting in his wife and daughter suffering from minor injuries. He continues: "The medical team in the Fallujah hospital performed two urgent surgeries on Abu Muhammad, but failed to improve his condition or awaken him from the coma. He was placed in a coma due to a piece of shrapnel that was lodged near his brain, in addition to damage to his liver and right kidney, as well as several fractures in his leg." On his part, another relative of Abu Muhammad�s named Ali Muhsin al Halbousi, in an interview with Mada Press claimed that "The Fallujah hospital suffers from a lack of resources and an overcrowding of casualties. Also, it is threatened by shelling as well, for two bombs were detonated near the Emergency Room door, which prompted us to consider moving Abu Muhammad, but we could not decide where to� we were constantly concerned with how we could move him within the city and out of it throughout his surgeries and despite his critical condition, because of the constant fighting and dense shelling between the army and the armed rebels in our neighborhoods."
8) On January 26, 2014, Dr. Wissam Jassem al Isawi admitted that the hospital had received that morning 35 injured civilians and 7 martyrs, amongst them women and children. The Maliki regime�s forces had begun to indiscriminately shell the residential suburbs in the Naimiya neighborhood, Karma city, and al Saqlawiyah city, ensuring that all of the victims were members of peaceful families that had stayed in their homes during the shelling (21). While some local activists published interviews with the families of the victims of pictorial civilian was hit and damaged as a result of indiscriminate shelling by the forces of al-Maliki regime (25).
On January 30th 2014 an MP representing Fallujah (Liqaa Wardi) criticized the Maliki regime�s failure to stop the indiscriminate shelling of Fallujah (15). The cruelty of the regime�s forces against innocent civilians violates article three of the Geneva Convention. This article demands that in the case of armed conflict in the territory of one of the belligerents, anybody who is not participating "must be treated with humanity at all times".
2. 3. The Crimes of Bombing Medical Centers and their Cadres
Fallujah Hospital was targeted more than three times up till January 27th by government forces. The first time, a mortar was dropped on the hospital, which resulted in the injury of civilians who had gone to the hospital for medicine. The second shelling damaged the roof of the building, causing major monetary damage. The third attack was artillery shelling which heavily damaged the hospital, and caused a power outage. The Head of the Doctors Residing in the Hospital confirmed that the general state of depression, terror, and fear amongst the medical cadres was overwhelming, not to mention the dangerous psychological effect the shelling has on the patients. In addition, medical staffs who works in the hospital was targeted on his way to work. Mr. Muayed Salman al Furaji was killed by bullet wounds shot by the Maliki regime�s forces on January 28th, 2014 as he entered Fallujah, coming from his home in the Bufraj area near the town of al Rumadi.
On February 4, 2014, and citing satellite Fallujah channel, a spokesman for the hospital in Fallujah Dr. Wissam al-Issawi confirmed that fall 3 shells on nearby Falluja Medical College Hospital for the educational year, which caused some damage of building. This accident news also confirmed by the Al-Waleed news agency, Local News, which was published the following photos to the scene :
2. 4. Probability Use of Shells Carrying Chemical Weapons and Fissile Weapons
Some information from eyewitnesses within Fallujah has confirmed that gasses defused from some mortar shells for several hours after they landed. Mahmoud Nouri Kamel, one of these eyewitnesses has given us images of these thermal shells, which fell on the city yesterday, near ice cream of Fairouza. When the shells fell, a strong flame blazed from it, and a chemical vapor that smelled like rotten eggs wafted towards those nearby. Images below depict the occurrence. Other eyewitnesses have sent us videos of the remains of a mortar that exuded a nausea-inducing vapor (8).
3. Forced Displacement of Civilians
The brutality of the indiscriminate shelling of residential neighborhoods has forced tens of thousands of civilians to exuding or escaping from the city. The estimation of humanitarian aids workers said about 40% of the original population still resides within the city. Most of the citizens who remain depend on daily salaries, meaning that they do not have the resources to rent a house outside of the city. Many civilians, when interviewed by satellite television channels said that they are forced to remain under life-threatening shelling due to their inability to leave and find refuge anywhere else (17). Others were forced to seek refuge from the fighting in abandoned skeletal buildings despite the lack of electricity, water, heat, and cooking utilities (24).
UN Reports confirmed the displacement of over 65,000 people due to the struggle in the towns of Fallujah and al Rumadi, and has left over 140,000 people homeless. The violent shelling has damaged numerous schools and hospitals and has thus displaced those families that were residing in them.
While children�s organization UNICEF pointed that more than 40 000 children have been displaced with their families in addition to the killing and wounding many of them through indiscriminate shelling of the city and the organization continues its attempts with the Maliki regime in order to create safe corridors for the exit of the displaced families with kids. While the International Organization for Migration (IOM) confirming on the 44 000 families have been displaced from Anbar, because of the military campaign of the owners of the cities (30).
Many civilians moved to the villages surrounding Fallujah, and a large group of them have moved to the north of Iraq and the other cities of Anbar and nearby Salahul Din. Others have resorted to residing in schools, the lack of temporary housing forcing them to live in classrooms.
The Watanya (National) Coalition, which follows the former Prime Minister, Iyad Alawi has admitted in a public statement dated on February 1st 2014 that "The residents of the city of Fallujah suffer under deteriorating humanitarian conditions which should inspire shame in any Iraqi who seeks the continued unity of the nation, and the protection of its future." The Watanya Coalition has also declared that "Fallujah is a city in a state of disaster, and promised to send immediate delegations to the UNAMI and the Red Crescent to provide the necessary humanitarian aid for the displaced families, since the government has failed to do so." This statement confirms the sheer size of the government cover-up on this genocidal crime, which is directed even towards refugees who fled the city because of the military operation. It also confirms the scandalous cover up and complete disregard on the part of international humanitarian organizations, not only in providing aid, but also in observing and implementing the articles of the Geneva Convention in cases of war.
President of the Iraqi Parliament Mr. Osama Najafi said that there are 50 000 families have been displaced due to military operations in Anbar province, and added that the conditions of those displaced so bad to the point of need general alarm !! Iraqi Red Crescent Society announced, in (January 30, 2014 ) , for the high number of displaced people from Anbar to more than 46 thousand families, emphasizing assistance to more than 24 thousand families of it (13) . Which means more than 22 000 displaced families stayed without humanitarian aid !!
We documented in recent days, some of the films that demonstrate the survival of many civilians inside Fallujah on 1 � 4February 2014, near the local markets for vegetables and food , which forced civilians to come out in these tough times for shopping or livelihood daily (20) . In addition to the deployment of activists inside the city for the movies to prove survival of many families that their points of relief in the inner city with more than 100 000 civilians, most of them from poor families and earning power per day, or are unable to work (29).
The greatest proof of the sectarian gov. an is the report by refugees from Anbar, when they arrived to the capitol Baghdad, complaining of restrictions placed on them by the armed forces, and the continued arrests, as well as the searching of Sunni quarters of the city, obstructing the daily lives of the families living in them. Since the arrival of fleeing families from Fallujah and al Rumadi to the capitol, the military, under the excuse of security reasons, has been conducting raids on these fleeing families. Numerous refugees have been arrested in the Sunni areas of Amriya, Ghazaliya, Sayedeya, Yarmouk, and Hittin, which house the families that fled the indiscriminate shelling in their homes. In addition, the local city councils in these areas has also expressed a need to review the families which flee to it, in order to keep a record of the number of families present in each area and handing them [I don�t know if they mean the records or the families] over to the government forces. On the other hand, the fleeing families were banned by the Maliki forces from entering the cities of Samraa except after showing proof of a sponsor-resident from within the city.
With the promotion of government sources and parliamentary belonging to Maliki�s bloc, for that there is the risk of the spread of terrorism and spread in the rest of the provinces after being accused the people of Anbar as they have become an incubator for terrorism!!, it is the definitive evidence to planned extermination arguments did not prove, but in their imaginations criminal diseased (31).
Now I have ever been trapped in the city of Fallujah, about more than a month did not stop the indiscriminate shelling of government or restless. Over the days get complicated living situation and deteriorating humanitarian situation, the center of the steadfastness of the people and their determination to hold fast to the demands for which more than a full year (26). As the cut cellular communications in Anbar province has increased the effects of the blockade against civilians and increase the suffering in the lack of communication between their children displaced in other areas or with the views that have prevented aid from entering the cities of Fallujah and Ramadi, except in limited cases. This prompted Motaheidon block MPs to threat to sue the cellular phone companies because of this non- humanitarian work after pressure Maliki regime, in order to tighten the blockade and prevent the dissemination of news of crimes and the fact that the humanitarian situation there is frightening (27). On 5 February 2014, the head of the parliamentary Committee on Migration Liqaa Wardi announced to Al-Tagheir channel that the 15 thousand displaced people from Anbar to Kurdistan scored only three thousand of them!! (27).