Between terror strikes and targeted killings

Between terror strikes and targeted killings

October 30, 2023

The evolving role of drone warfare in Iraq

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In the mid-1990s, Saddam Hussein attempted to impress the world with his weapon arsenal and presented Iraq’s newest tool to a group of journalists.

This medium- sized uncrewed aerial vehicle (UAV) was named the al-Quds, or more technically, the RPV-30A.1 Western intelligence agencies hyped the potential for this drone to deliver weapons of mass destruction in the period leading up to the 2003 war, though the remotely piloted plane was of little significance.

Since then, drones in all shapes and sizes have been a tool in Iraq’s many internal and external conflicts. Building on the previous work by PAX on the use of drones in conflicts in Yemen, Ukraine, the African continent and Syria, this report aims to provide an overview of how drones have been and are being used by all security actors in Iraq.

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