Iraqi VP Accused of Financing Assassination Attempt on PM

As the last U.S. troops left Iraq for Kuwait, Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki accused his vice president of financing an assassination attempt against the premier. At least seven Iraqis were killed and 14 more were wounded in the most recent violence.

The last American troops may have dramatically departed Iraq as part of the U.S. withdrawal, but at least 157 American military personnel will remain in Iraq. They will work as trainers for the Office of Security Cooperation-Iraq (OSC-I). An unknown number of civilian contractors, many ex-military, will also operate within Iraq.

Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki accused Vice President Tareq al-Hashemi of financing an attack on the parliament building three weeks ago. The premier has given Hashemi, who is Sunni, two days to prove his innocence. Three of the vice president’s guards were already arrested. Separately, Hashemi is among those government officials and lawmakers who intend to hand in their resignations as part of an Iraqiya bloc walkout protesting Maliki’s dictatorial mismanagement of the country. Baghdad Operations Command had previously blamed two groups, from Anbar and Baghdad, for the assassination attempt. Not everyone believes the attack was intended for Maliki. Hashemi, who is now in Suleimaniya said his entourage was stopped at Baghdad airport, but no wanted persons were found in his group.

In Mosul, gunmen attacked a checkpoint, killing three soldiers and wounding one officer. A civilian was shot dead near his home.

A Kurdish Asayesh agent was killed in Saidiya when a bomb planted on his car exploded in front of the Kurdistan Democratic Party offices. The building caught on fire.

In Baghdad, three bodyguards were also wounded in a previously reported attack on a judge. Three civilians were wounded in a Talibiya-district bombing. An I.E.D. killed two people last night in Aden Square.

Three civilians were wounded, including a son, during a blast that targeted a judge’s home in Kirkuk. A woman was wounded in a separate bombing.

Three people were wounded in Mussayab when a sticky bomb exploded at a bus terminal.

Protestors forced the relocation of the provincial council meeting from Baquba to Khanaqin.

Seventeen suspects were captured in Samarra.

Two suspects were arrested in Garma.

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Author: Margaret Griffis

Margaret Griffis is a journalist from Miami Beach, Florida and has been covering Iraqi casualties for Antiwar.com since 2006.