UNAMI investigates reports of human rights violations in Tuz Khurmatu

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Salahuddin ( A team from the Human Rights office of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) paid on Tuesday a visit to Tuz Khurmatu city in Salahuddin province to investigate reports of human rights violations.

The team is due to investigate reports of punitive destruction of property of residents who have been displaced by the clashes in the area in October and reports of intimidation to prevent the safe return of the displaced to their homes, UNAMI said in a statement, quoted by Baghdad Today on Tuesday.

“This visit has been prompted by repeated reports about indiscriminate targeting of civilians, forced evictions and destruction of property prior to but notably after 16 October 2017,” the statement read.

At least 150 houses belonging to Turkmen and Kurds were reportedly set ablaze and there were other reports of acts of violence, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Iraq Ján Kubiš said in a briefing to the UN Security Council meeting in New York on November 22.

Moreover, the United Nations expressed concern about the clashes in the town which have inflicted casualties, and triggered a new wave of displacements primarily from the Kurdish community.

Last week, a UNAMI team visited several areas in the town and met with a number of officials. UNAMI officials also met in Erbil with a number of representatives of Tuz Khurmatu displaced residents and listened to their accounts about the circumstances surrounding the alleged attacks.

UNAMI also expressed its concern about the recent repeated indiscriminate mortar attacks, which have inflicted losses, including civilian casualties from among the Turkmen community in the town.

It called for an immediate end to acts that threaten the security and the safety of Kurdish and Turkmen communities and their civilian residents and called upon the Iraqi government to take all necessary measures to end violence and violations of human rights in Tuz Khurmatu.

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