A second grand ayatollah has come out against Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki retaining his premiership, while the U.N. high commissioner called for a political solution. The fighting goes on, though. At least 51 were killed and 43 more were wounded, but dozens more casualties went uncounted.
Through his son, Grand Ayatollah Bashir al-Najafi said that removing Maliki from the prime minister’s office would be an important part of the solution for Iraq’s woes. Najafi is one of the top Shi’ite cleric’s in Iraq.
The U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, António Guterres, warned that there will be no humanitarian resolution for the problems in Iraq. The government must find a political solution to the divisions.
Sunni leaders are reminding everyone that the Islamic State is a "marginal" player in recent violence. The more important aspect is a Sunni revolt against the Shi’ite-led government, particularly sectarian politicians such as Maliki.
Since the Islamic State took over parts of Iraq, Saudi Arabia has been reinforcing its border troops, but the focus of the deployments may not be IS militants. Instead, they have a greater fear of the Shi’ite militias that are organizing across Iraq with help of their regional enemy Iran.
In Muqdadiya, militants killed an elderly man who fired shots at them.
Clashes with militants near Kirkuk left 21 Peshmerga fighters with injuries.
A clash in Hujayer left two militants dead and four policemen wounded.
Militants wounded dozens during a mortar attack in Amerli.
In Mosul, dozens of people were killed or injured during air strikes. A rocket attack killed even more. Two Peshmerga members were killed at a checkpoint to the north of the city. Fifteen militants were killed in an airstrike.
Thirteen militants were killed in Awja.
Eight militants were killed in Duluiya.
In Baiji, an I.S. leader was killed.