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Robert Cusack

Dozens of civilians killed in Iraqi airstrikes on market-place

Iraqi air-strikes on Tal Abtall in November 2016 [AFP]

Date of publication: 7 December, 2016

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At least 66 corpses have been recovered from the rubble, as initial reports suggest that the massacre was caused by 'bad intelligence'.

At least 66 civilians died and a further 96 were injured on Wednesday morning by three Iraqi airstrikes on a market-place in al-Qaim, Iraq.

Women and children were among those killed as people queued to receive government pensions and salaries from a municipal office in the town on the Syria border.

The death toll is likely to rise as rescue workers continue to pull victims from the rubble, a spokesperson from the local hospital told The New Arab.

"Government planes took part in the massacre of more than 60 civilians in al-Qaim," tweeted local MP, Ahmad al-Sulemani.

Three airstrikes targeted the local tailors' market and hit a crowd waiting in line at the local pensions office.

A spokesperson for the Iraqi ministry of defence did not comment on the airstrikes when approached by The New Arab, but it is thought the attack was a result of faulty intelligence in the key frontier town through which Islamic State group fighters are known to pass.

MP Mohammad al-Karbouli on Wednesday demanded a parliamentary inquiry and sought evidence that lessons would be learnt from the atrocity.

"To repeat the mistakes of bombing civilians is to discredit our troops," he said.

Iraqi forces are fighting IS in areas of Anbar province surrounding al-Qaim.

"It raises questions over the accuracy of the intelligence coming from the joint operations command in identifying Islamic State targets."



Translation: #Breaking: MP Ahmad al-Sulemani: Government planes took part in the massacre of more than 60 civilians in al-Qaim

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