Iraq death toll at lowest level in five years

Baghdad (AFP) –


The death toll from violence in Iraq has fallen to its lowest monthly level in five years following the Islamic State group's military collapse, the United Nations said Monday.

The United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq said new lows were recorded in October and November.

In November, a total of 117 civilians and police were killed and 264 wounded in acts of terrorism, violence and armed conflict, UNAMI said.

The highest death tolls by province were recorded in Baghdad, at 51, and Salaheddin, with 24 deaths.

"Two bombings in Tuz Khurmatu, Salahaddin governorate, and in Baghdad governorate in November, which caused numerous casualties among civilians, are a horrible reminder that the terrorists can still inflict blows at peaceful citizens," said UN envoy Jan Kubis.

"All measures need to be taken by the authorities to protect civilians against the barbarism of the terrorists."

The UN mission said violence in Iraq cost 114 lives in October and that the total since the start of the year had reached 3,229 dead.

But the figures for October and November were the two lowest monthly death tolls since November 2012.

The highest toll, of 1,775 dead, came in June 2014 as IS jihadists swept across swathes of Iraq and neighbouring Syria.

The group has since suffered major military defeats and seen its self-declared "caliphate" collapse.