Updated at 7:55 p.m. EST, June 5, 2010
At least 10 Iraqis were killed and 14 more were wounded in attacks that included two political assassinations of Iraqiya candidates. In Diyala province, meanwhile, relations between Sunni fighters and the Shi’ite council deteriorated after a call to disarm them. Also, Kurdish officials reported another armed incursion into Iraqi Kurdistan by Iranian troops chasing Party For A Free Life in Kurdistan (PJAK) rebels.
An Awakening Council (Sahwa) leader, who recently denied media reports that claimed he was arrested, warned that the nearly 10,000 Sahwa fighters manning checkpoints in Diyala province would abandon their posts if authorities cancel their weapons permits. Also, dozens of Sahwa members were detained this week for alleged ties to extremist groups.
These are only the latest incidents involving allegations against the Sahwa who counter them with complaints against the Shi’ite-led council that runs the predominantly Sunni province and the Shi’ite police who attack Sunni citizens. The province is also home to a large number of Kurds, who have also faced harassment. The Sahwa are credited with helping reduce sectarian violence across Iraq, but many of them are former Sunni insurgents, which makes them at best uneasy allies with the Shi’ite-led central government.
In Mosul, gunmen in military uniforms killed a losing candidate from the Iraqiya party; the group, which numbered about 20, went door-to-door in search of their victim. Four Arab gunmen were killed during a joint Iraqi-U.S. operation; it is unclear if the men were Saudi nationals or Arab Iraqis. A gunman was stopped before he could launch a grenade at a checkpoint.
In Baghdad, six people were injured in a bombing last night in the Amil neighborhood.
Five people were wounded during a blast in Saidiya.
Another Iraqiya candidate was killed during a bombing at a clinic in the border town of Qaim. It is believed the attack targeted the man, who is a doctor, because of his connections to the Iraqiya party. He did not win a seat in March elections though.
A security operation in Suleimaniyah left four dead and one injured. Two wanted men opened fired on Kurdish security forces that were about to capture them. They and two servicemembers were killed. An officer was also wounded.
Two soldiers were severely wounded in a blast in Muqdadiya.
Seven Naqshabandiya Army members were captured in Qara Taba.