Iraqi Rebels Using Kia SUVs as Weapon: Report

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A report from Business Insider suggests that ISIS in Iraq has been using Kia Motors and Hyundai vehicles in suicide attacks.

Kia and Hyundai sport-utility vehicles, with metal plating crudely welded on as armor, were spotted in Mosul – the second-largest city in Iraq – in videos from ISIS propagandists and Iraqi Security Forces (ISF), according to the report.

“Based on the lack of armor on the quarter-panels and the rear, evidence suggests that the vehicles have been used as vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices (VBIEDs) in suicide attacks,” according to the report.

The report suggests that “SUVs would be a logical choice for ISIS militants to execute their suicide attacks.” Unlike coupes and sedans, SUVs have the option for all-wheel drive and a more robust suspension system.

The “sheer number of the retrofitted Korean SUVs appearing on Mosul’s streets also raises the question of exactly how the insurgents were able to acquire them,” according to the report.

Kia representatives told Business Insider that it had two dealerships in Mosul in 2012. The automaker said that rebels did not take new Kia vehicles in Mosul as it removed its units “before the ISIS forces moved in.”

“We at Kia Motors confirm that there is no loss of Kia vehicles in Mosul,” the company’s representative said. “Our activities from those dealerships were shut down when the occupation of the ISIS forces in Mosul took place in 2014.”

Photo Credit: PurpleOlive2 via Twitter

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