Specific crimes vary from arson to illegal hunting

Duhok forest police arrest 224 individuals for environmental offenses

DUHOK, September 13 — Duhok’s Forest Police have arrested 224 individuals on various charges since the beginning of 2023, which according to authorities resulted in a decrease in violations compared to previous years.

Ramadan Sayari, Head of the Environmental Police Units in Duhok, told 964: “Our teams have managed to apprehend 224 individuals on charges of significant environmental harm, killing animals, and illegal hunting since the start of this year.”

He added that 178 individuals were caught fishing during the annual fishing ban period, which runs from March to May.

“Additionally, the police arrested 16 individuals for hunting wild animals and 21 others on charges related to tree cutting. Furthermore, nine individuals were apprehended for deliberate arson, which this year resulted in 51 fires damaging 200 dunams across 19 agricultural lands,” Sayari said.

He added, “This year, compared to the previous year, the area of land and dunums [affected by arson] has increased, and the percentage of damage and violations has decreased.”