A triple bombing in Mosul may have left the most casualties today, but a bombing in Hilla is the most significant. The second attack targeted a man working for Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, Iraq’s top cleric and possibly the most powerful man in Iraq. Overall, at least 16 Iraqis were killed and 36 more were wounded across the country. Also, three Iranian pilgrims were wounded in an attack in Diyala province.
As many as 20 suspects were arrested today in connection with the murders of 22 Shi’ite men near Nukhaib village in Anbar province on Monday. A large anti-terror unit said to be from neighboring Karbala province traveled secretly to Rutba, which is also in Anbar, to make the arrests.
Updated at 2:09 p.m. EST, Dec. 4, 2010
Many of today’s casualties were Iranian pilgrims visiting Shi’ite religious sites. The attacks, which also struck at Iraqi Shi’ite neighborhoods, came soon after it was discovered that Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s may have been placing inexperienced Shi’ite loyalists into security positions. About seven Iranians were killed and 45 more were wounded in these attacks. About 11 Iraqis were also killed and 88 more were wounded. Meanwhile, German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle made a brief, unannounced visit to Iraq.
Update at 9:01 p.m EST, Nov. 8, 2010
At least 40 people were killed and 130 more were wounded in new violence across Iraq. Two of the deadliest attacks targeted Shi’ite pilgrims near Iraq’s holiest sites. Although figures are inexact, at least 11 Iranian pilgrims were killed and as many as 63 were wounded in those cities alone. The pilgrims were visiting holy sites in Iraq just a week before the Eid al-Adha holiday begins. Meanwhile, Iraqi politicians met in Arbil where they were to have announced a deadlock-breaking deal concerning government formation, but instead bickered over the details until they ultimately agreed to continue discussions tomorrow.