Yesterday, Oil Minister Abdul Karim Luaybi complained that Iraqi Kurdistan is not playing by Baghdad’s rules when it comes to oil sales. Now it is Basra’s turn to criticize the ministry for ignoring its own rules. Local politicians are suing the central government because they were not included in negotiations that lead to a deal between Baghdad and its new partners, Shell and Mitsubishi, in the southern oil fields. At least 11 Iraqis were killed and 12 more were wounded in the latest round of attacks.
At least 16 Iraqis were killed and 14 more were wounded in new violence, most of it small arms attacks. Meanwhile, a conference that aims to have Basra province formally declared a semi-autonomous region is underway. Although the area is oil-rich, much of the population is poor; it’s believed that semi-autonomy could turn the region into an economic powerhouse like Iraqi Kurdistan.
At least three Iraqis were killed and 10 more were wounded in light violence. The sparse amount of reports trickling out of Iraq are likely due to the combination of Muslim and Christian holidays this month.