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06/05/2020 Iraq (International Christian Concern) –  On Tuesday, suspicious fires were set in the Hamdaniyah District of the Nineveh Governorate. According to early estimates, the fires devoured over 240 acres of agricultural and pasture land. An investigation is ongoing. These fires occurred in a predominately Christian area and impacts the livelihoods of those who are attempting to rebuild their lives following displacement from the Islamic State (ISIS).

This is not the first instance of crop fires being set in Nineveh. Many residents are quick to blame either ISIS or the PMF (Popular Mobilization Forces), an Iranian-backed militia which controls the territory. The PMF is also a strong supporter of the Shabak, an ethnic minority who also suffered persecution under ISIS but emerged from the genocide in a position of strength. There are often tensions between the Shabak and Christians, especially as the Shabak have moved into Christian areas in a sometimes forceful manner.

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