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The siege of Amirli was a siege of the predominantly Turkmen town of Amirli in Iraq by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) during the 2014 Iraq conflict. The town was besieged by ISIS forces since June 2014, lacking access to food, electricity, and water. Most the residents are Shia Turkmen, who have organized local self-defense militias to fight against ISIS.[10] On August 31, the Iraqi military reportedly broke the siege and entered the town.[11][12]

Events[edit | edit source]

Siege[edit | edit source]

The siege began in June, after Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) forces advanced on Iraqi positions in Northern Iraq. They attacked the town, but failed to capture it after townspeople armed with AK-47s put up resistance. However, ISIS had more powerful weapons compared to the local militia, prompting fears that they would try to storm the town.[13] ISIS forces continued to fire mortars and rockets into the town and launched raids against it. 12,000 citizens in Amirli were in danger from being killed by ISIS, dying from thirst or hunger.

The United Nations expressed concern over the situation in Amirli, and warned about the possibility of ISIS committing a massacre in the town.[10]

Military efforts[edit | edit source]

On 30 August, the Iraqi Army, Shi'ite militias and Peshmerga started a campaign to break the siege, after the speaker of Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, Abdul-Mahdi al-Karabalai, called to move and break the siege by ISIS on the town.[7] The forces attacked ISIS from three areas, the army attacked from the south of Amirli in Adhaim, the Peshmerga attacked from the north in Tuz Khormato, the militias attacked from the east in Kifri.[14]

On 31 August, the United States, France, United Kingdom and Australia began humanitarian aid drops, like food, water and medical supplies, to help prevent a potential massacre against the Shi'a Turkmen minority in Amirli.[11] The US also carried out air strikes on ISIS positions around and near Amirli. Iraqi officials stated that they had reached Amirli and broken the siege and that the military was currently fighting to clear the areas around the town.[12]

On the same day, with the support of the US Air Force, the offensive troops succeeded in breaking the siege and freeing the villages around it, with the local citizens cheering and celebrating the end of the siege.[8] The speaker of the Iraqi Armed Forces, Qasim Atta, stated that the troops succeeded in breaking the siege by entering the Amirli from the south.[8] The offensive forces are proceeding in opening the Baghdad-Amirli road.[15]

Aftermath[edit | edit source]

After regaining control over Amirli, on 1 September, the Iraqi Army and its allies went on and retrieved the town of Suleiman Bek (90 km east of Tikrit) from ISIS.[16][17] An Iraqi official stated that 23 Chechens from ISIS were killed, including 10 snipers.[18]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "The Iraqi troops launches a huge operation to break the siege of Amirli". http://www.raialyoum.com/?p=144851. Retrieved 30 August 2014. 
  2. "Iraqi Town Besieged by Islamic State Pleads for U.S. Help". August 21, 2014. http://online.wsj.com/articles/iraqi-town-besieged-by-extremist-group-pleads-for-u-s-help-1408665022. Retrieved August 24, 2014. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 "US planes drop aid and strike IS positions near Iraq's Amerli". http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-29001357. Retrieved 31 August 2014. 
  4. "نقش ایران در پیروزی پیشمرگه‌ها بر دولت اسلامی". http://www.dw.de/%D9%86%D9%82%D8%B4-%D8%A7%DB%8C%D8%B1%D8%A7%D9%86-%D8%AF%D8%B1-%D9%BE%DB%8C%D8%B1%D9%88%D8%B2%DB%8C-%D9%BE%DB%8C%D8%B4%D9%85%D8%B1%DA%AF%D9%87%D9%87%D8%A7-%D8%A8%D8%B1-%D8%AF%D9%88%D9%84%D8%AA-%D8%A7%D8%B3%D9%84%D8%A7%D9%85%DB%8C/a-17894823. Retrieved 4 September 2014. 
  5. "Iraqi Army and Sadr's militia end the siege of ISIS on Amirli". http://www.elaph.com/Web/News/2014/8/936599.html. Retrieved 31 August 2014. 
  6. "The army enters Amirli and break the siege, after ending ISIS". http://arabic.cnn.com/middleeast/2014/08/31/iraq-amerli-seige-broken. Retrieved 31 August 2014. 
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 "A brutal battle with ISIS to break the siege of Amirli". http://www.alghad.com/articles/822609-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%B9%D8%B1%D8%A7%D9%82-%D9%82%D8%AA%D8%A7%D9%84-%D8%B9%D9%86%D9%8A%D9%81-%D9%85%D8%B9-%D8%AF%D8%A7%D8%B9%D8%B4-%D9%84%D9%81%D9%83-%D8%AD%D8%B5%D8%A7%D8%B1-%D8%A7%D9%85%D8%B1%D9%84%D9%8A-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AA%D8%B1%D9%83%D9%85%D8%A7%D9%86%D9%8A%D8%A9?s=fbb4e8c985c55bfa915ff55578f7c223. Retrieved 30 August 2014. 
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 "Iraqi and Kurdish troops enter the sieged Amirli". http://www.bbc.co.uk/arabic/middleeast/2014/08/140831_iraq_amerli_forces_enter.shtml. Retrieved 31 August 2014. 
  9. 9.0 9.1 "Peshmerga and Iraqi forces enter Suleiman Bek town". http://www.aljazeera.net/news/arabic/2014/9/1/%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%A8%D8%B4%D9%85%D8%B1%D9%83%D8%A9-%D9%88%D9%82%D9%88%D8%A7%D8%AA-%D8%B9%D8%B1%D8%A7%D9%82%D9%8A%D8%A9-%D8%AA%D8%AF%D8%AE%D9%84%D8%A7%D9%86-%D8%A8%D9%84%D8%AF%D8%A9-%D8%B3%D9%84%D9%8A%D9%85%D8%A7%D9%86-%D8%A8%D9%8A%D9%83. Retrieved 1 September 2014. 
  10. 10.0 10.1 "Iraq conflict: UN warns of possible Amerli 'massacre'". BBC. http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-28910674. Retrieved August 23, 2014. 
  11. 11.0 11.1 "Iraqi forces 'reach besieged Amerli'". http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-29003321. Retrieved 31 August 2014. 
  12. 12.0 12.1 "Iraqi army breaks ISIS siege of Shi'ite Turkmen town of Amirli". http://www.cbsnews.com/news/iraqi-army-breaks-isis-siege-of-shiite-turkmen-town-of-amirli/. Retrieved 31 August 2014. 
  13. "ISIS Lays Siege to Iraqi Turkmen Village". TIME. August 24, 2014. http://time.com/3169489/amirli-iraq-turkmen/. 
  14. "The Iraqi army launches a military operation to break the siege of the Turkmen Shi'ite town of Amirli". http://www.france24.com/ar/20140830-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%AC%D9%8A%D8%B4-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%B9%D8%B1%D8%A7%D9%82%D9%8A-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%A8%D8%B4%D9%85%D8%B1%D9%83%D8%A9-%D8%AD%D8%B5%D8%A7%D8%B1-%D8%A2%D9%85%D8%B1%D9%84%D9%8A/. Retrieved 30 August 2014. 
  15. "Freeing Amirli from ISIS and military deaths in Ramadi". http://www.alarabiya.net/ar/arab-and-world/iraq/2014/08/31/%D9%88%D8%A7%D8%B4%D9%86%D8%B7%D9%86-%D8%AA%D9%84%D9%82%D9%8A-%D9%85%D8%B3%D8%A7%D8%B9%D8%AF%D8%A7%D8%AA-%D8%A7%D9%86%D8%B3%D8%A7%D9%86%D9%8A%D8%A9-%D9%84%D8%A8%D9%84%D8%AF%D8%A9-%D8%A7%D9%85%D8%B1%D9%84%D9%8A-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%B9%D8%B1%D8%A7%D9%82%D9%8A%D8%A9.html. Retrieved 31 August 2014. 
  16. "Iraq regain control over Amirli and Suleiman Bek". http://www.al-akhbar.com/node/214641. Retrieved 1 September 2014. 
  17. "Suleiman Bek is completely liberated, and 23 Chechens from ISIS were killed". http://www.alalam.ir/news/1628339. Retrieved 1 September 2014. 
  18. "23 Chechens died in Suleiman Bek, east of Tikrit". http://www.alsumaria.tv/news/109541/%D9%85%D9%82%D8%AA%D9%84-23-%D8%B4%D9%8A%D8%B4%D8%A7%D9%86%D9%8A%D8%A7-%D9%81%D9%8A-%D9%86%D8%A7%D8%AD%D9%8A%D8%A9-%D8%B3%D9%84%D9%8A%D9%85%D8%A7%D9%86-%D8%A8%D9%8A%D9%83-%D8%B4%D8%B1%D9%82/ar. Retrieved 1 September 2014. 

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