A number of mass graves have been discovered in central Tikrit, as Iraqi forces continue to mop up the southern three quarters of a city they finally seized after the latest month-long offensive.
These graves are massive, and while a final count is not expected for some time, around 1,700 bodies are believed to be present, overwhelmingly soldiers from the initial June takeover of the city by ISIS.
The vast majority of the bodies are believed to be soldiers, with indications that these are the remnants of the Speicher Massacre, when ISIS captured a large number of Iraqi soldiers at Camp Speicher near Tikrit.
At the time the Iraqi military dismissed the captured soldiers as “deserters.” Human Rights Watch believes 800 were executed in that incident alone, with the rest seemingly just the defenders of Tikrit when it first fell.
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