Despite indications of a surge in violence, U.S. President Barack Obama promised to end U.S. combat operations on schedule this month and shift the Iraq mission to civilian and diplomatic efforts. Still, at least 14 Iraqis were killed and 36 more were wounded in new violence. Meanwhile, Kuwait marked the 20th anniversary of the country’s invasion by Iraqi troops and start of the first Gulf War. Also, Saudi Arabia is welcoming the opportunity to strengthen relations with Iraq and reign in Iran’s influence in the region.
In Mosul, a gunman killed a bodyguard who worked for an Iraqiya list politician and wounded two others, including a child. A bomb left on a highway outside town killed an army officer when it exploded. A roadside bomb targeting police in Rifaee wounded two kids instead. A separate bomb wounded two adults. Six people were wounded in a grenade attack in Farooq. A second grenade attack wounded one policeman. Two people were killed in another bombing. Gunmen wounded a policeman at a checkpoint.
In Baghdad, a blast in the al-Shurta al Rabeaa neighborhood killed three people and wounded eight others.
Two people were killed and seven were wounded when gunmen opened fire in a Sadr City coffee shop.
Three people were killed and seven more were wounded during a blast at a policeman’s home in Garma. The bomb killed the policeman, his wife, and a child.
A bomb in Qayara killed two people.
Two al-Qaeda suspects were picked up in Saidiya.
In Zinjili, a vehicle ban is in place.
No casualties were reported after a blast blamed on the PKK derailed a train in eastern Turkey.