Updated at 7:10 p.m. EST, Nov. 19, 2008
At least 11 Iraqis were killed and another 18 were wounded in today’s attacks. Also, the Iraqi governent reported that they had discovered a mass grave three months ago near Najaf. The grave contained 150 bodies killed during the Saddam era. Meanwhile, debate in parliament over a U.S.-Iraqi security agreement turned hostile and was postponed until tomorrow. Elsewhere in Baghdad, U.S. and Turkish officials joined the Iraqis for talks on the situation with Kurdistan Workers Party rebels.
Sadrist lawmakers had already disrupted parliament several times today when a particularly aggressive incident caused adjournment of the session until tomorrow. Lawmakers were discussing a proposed U.S.-Iraqi security agreement that Shi’ite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr has come out against. A smaller Shi’ite group, the Fadhila Party, has also come out against the pact, saying that they were left out of negotiations. The agreement is expected to pay on Nov. 24 despite Sadrist opposition. Meanwhile, demonstrations in support of the agreement took place in Hilla and Tikrit.
Iraqi officials repatriated the bodies of 150 Kurds who were found in a mass grave near Najaf three months ago. The victims were men, women and children. Documents on the bodies identified them as Kurds, so they were flown to Arbil. Asaad Abu Gilel, governor of Najaf Province, said that the mass grave was one of 45 local sites attributable to the Saddam regime, when thousands of Kurds were sent to concentration camps in the south.
In Baghdad, two bombs injured five people in the Karrada district. One dumped body was found. Five security personnel were injured during operations that netted 42 suspects; 250 bombs were defused as well. Also, a senior Iranian Revolutionary Guards’ elite Quds force member was arrested at the airport on suspicion of funneling arms into Iraq as he was trying to leave the country.
Residents near Tikrit called police before attacking several gunmen in their area. Four of the gunmen were killed and a fifth was injured. One resident was also injured during the clashes.
A female body was found north of Kirkuk.
A police officer was killed in Samarra when a sticky bomb attached to his car blew up.
Two family members were wounded when joint U.S.-Iraqi forces raided a home in Diwaniya. A former Iraqi army officer was arrested.
TNT was seized in Makhmour.
As the U.S., Turkey and Iraq held talks over the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) in Baghdad, one Turkish soldier was killed and five more were wounded just over the border in Turkey. The PKK uses northern Iraq as a base from which to launch attacks in Turkey. The separatist group would like to see an autonomous Kurdistan in parts of Iraq, Turkey, Iraq, Syria and Armenia. Meanwhile, one rebel was killed separately, and another rebel surrendered.
Compiled by Margaret Griffis