Battle of Zumar
Part of the Northern Iraq offensive (August 2014)
Date1–4 August 2014
(3 days)
Result Kurdish victory

 Iraqi Kurdistan

Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant
Commanders and leaders
 Iraqi Kurdistan Unknown Unknown
unknown unknown
Casualties and losses
14 killed (Kurdish claim)
281 killed (ISIL claim)
100 killed
38 captured (Kurdish claim)

The Battle of Zumar was fought between the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant and Kurdish Peshmerga troops over the city of Zumar in Nineveh province in northern Iraq. It started when ISIL launched an offensive on Zummar from 1–4 August 2014, resulting in its capture.[1][2] On the 25 October, after US airstrikes, Kurdish Peshmerga troops succeeded in recapturing the city, after an unsuccessful attempt to hold it in September.[3]

Capture by ISIS

Beginning on the 1 August 2014, ISIS attacked Kurdish Peshmerga positions in and around the city of Zumar. According to Kurdish sources, the initial advance of ISIS was repelled with some 100 jihadist militants and 14 Kurdish troops killed; 38 more ISIS jihadists were captured by Peshmerga.[4] However, three days later, ISIS captured the town as well as its oil field.[1][2]


Kurdish counteroffensive

On the 31 August Kurdish Peshmerga troops entered Zumar. The Kurdish forces launched the offensive after capturing the Ain Zala oilfields just outside Zumar two days earlier.[5] ISIL fighters torched three oil wells as they retreated from Ain Zala. The Peshmerga have been able to recapture several ISIL-controlled towns after receiving weaponry from the United States and other nations. As a result of the attack by Peshmerga forces on the Zumar, more than 92 ISIL militants have been killed and a further 160 taken to hospitals in Mosul with severe injuries.[6] Kurdish forces were eventually forced to leave Zumar after enduring heavy losses.[3]

French air strikes on IS

Qassim al-Moussawi, a spokesman for the Iraqi military, said on the 19 September 2014 that four French air strikes with Dassault Rafale fighter aircraft, had hit the town of Zumar, killing dozens of militants, AP news agency reported.[7][8]

Kurdish recapture of Zumar

On the 25 October 2014, Kurdish forces launched an offensive on the town. ISIS forces put up fierce resistance, and launched a car bomb attack on Peshmerga forces. Iraqi television said that 50 ISIS fighters were killed and 10 vehicles destroyed.[9] After seventeen US airstrikes on the town, Kurdish forces took control of it. Their future goal is to regain control of nearby Sinjar, which was the scene of a massacre against Yazidi Kurds. The Daily Beast reported that American and German special forces were involved in coordinating airstrikes in Zumar; a report which The Pentagon denied.[10]


  1. ^ a b "ISIS takes over Iraq's biggest dam". 3 August 2014. Retrieved 16 October 2014.
  2. ^ a b "Sunni Extremists in Iraq Seize 3 Towns From Kurds and Threaten Major Dam". The New York Times. Retrieved 16 October 2014.
  3. ^ a b "Kurdish forces retake north Iraqi town from Islamic State". Reuters. 25 October 2014. Archived from the original on 2015-10-10. Retrieved 2017-06-30.
  4. ^ "Jihadists kill dozens as Iraq fighting rages". 2 August 2014. Retrieved 16 October 2014.
  5. ^ "Peshmerga, IS Battle for Zumar". Rudaw. Retrieved 16 October 2014.
  6. ^ "92 IS Militants Killed in Zumar". Archived from the original on October 6, 2014. Retrieved September 9, 2014.
  7. ^ "BBC News - France launches first air strikes on IS in Iraq". BBC News. 19 September 2014. Retrieved 16 October 2014.
  8. ^ "First French Airstrike Destroys Depot of ISIS in Irag". 19 September 2014. Retrieved 16 October 2014.
  9. ^ "ISIL pounded as Iraqi and Kurd forces advance". Al Jazeera. October 25, 2014.
  10. ^ Sypher, Ford (2 September 2015). "Are American Troops Already Fighting on the Front Lines in Iraq?". The Daily Beast. United States. Retrieved 6 March 2015.

See also

Coordinates: 36°39′27″N 42°36′23″E / 36.6575°N 42.6065°E / 36.6575; 42.6065