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Civilian Casualties of Violence in Iraq in November Lowest in 6 Years: UN

BAGHDAD: Violence across Iraq killed a total of 41 civilians in November, the lowest since the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) began publishing monthly casualty data six years ago, the UN mission said Sunday.

A UNAMI statement said that 73 civilians were wounded in the terror attacks and armed conflicts in Iraq last month.
The Iraqi capital Baghdad was the worst affected with 55 civilian casualties, as 23 people were killed and 32 others wounded, it said.

Jan Kubis, the United Nations special envoy to Iraq and the UNAMI chief, said “the continuing loss of life is regrettable but the latest figures are the lowest since UNAMI began publishing them in November 2012.”

“These figures reflect the continuing downward trend in violence as the country recovers from its fight with terrorism and presses ahead towards a stable, prosperous future,” Kubis said.

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The security situation in Iraq has been dramatically improved after Iraqi security forces fully defeated the extremist Islamic State militants across the country in December last year.

However, small groups and individuals of extremist militants regrouped in urban and rugged areas and are carrying out attacks against the security forces and civilians despite operations from time to time to hunt them down.

Many blame the chronic instability, cycle of violence, and the emergence of extremist groups in Iraq on the United States, which invaded the country in March 2003, under the pretext of seeking to destroy weapons of mass destruction in the country. But no such weapons were found.