Suspected Islamic State (IS) militants carried out three separate attacks in and near Kirkuk (Kirkuk province) on Thursday, October 11, killing at least three people and wounding ten others. A bomb exploded in central Kirkuk on Thursday morning (local time), killing two people and wounding four others. The bomb reportedly exploded at the entrance to the municipality's technical workshop, targeting government workers. A roadside bomb also detonated on the Kirkuk-Baghdad highway, near the city of Kirkuk, on the same day, killing one person and wounding three others. Additionally, on Thursday evening (local time), a mortar attack wounded three people southwest of Kirkuk. Similar IS attacks are possible in the Kirkuk area in the coming weeks.
Although Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi claimed victory over IS in December 2017, the group retains a degree of freedom of movement in parts of the country, particularly in northern and western Iraq. IS militants continue to carry out attacks, notably against security forces. High-profile attacks often prompt equally significant security responses, including enhanced checkpoint operations and more proactive operations, with resulting effects on transit.
Individuals in Kirkuk province are advised to remain vigilant for militant activity and adhere to any instructions issued by the local authorities and their home governments.
The security environment in Iraq remains complex. Although travel is possible in some areas with proper security protocols in place, other areas should be considered strictly off-limits. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to all travel.
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