Tuesday: 2 Iraqis Killed, 6 Wounded

The new government headed by Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki was sworn in today. News of the breakthrough overshadowed if not dampened reports of violence. At least two Iraqis were killed and six others were wounded in light violence. In the United Kingdom meanwhile, over 200 Iraqis have lost their bid in a British court for a public inquiry into allegations that British soldiers abused them while in detention in Iraq.

Lawmakers approved about 30 cabinet members today, ending a nine-month long deadlock that prevented government formation after national elections. The remaining posts are currently occupied, but those ministers will be replaced after more political wrangling. Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki will retain temporary control of three security portfolios as well. Parliament also adopted a 43-point program that will liberalize the economy and fight terrorism.

While Iraqiya party leader Ayad Allawi said his bloc would support the new government, the Sadrists are still wary. Separately, Iraq’s women politicians staged a protest at the beginning of the parliamentary session. Senior female lawmaker Alaa Talabani read a statement decrying the lack of females in the cabinet. Only one woman has been nominated for a post, which is down from four in the last government. Despite all outward appearance that a non-sectarian yet Sunni-supported government was thwarted from rightfully taking power, U.S. President Barack Obama lauded the moment as a "clear rejection" of sectarianism.

Threats purportedly from the Islamic State of Iraq have forced Christians in Kirkuk to tone down Christmas observances. Only daytime mass will be held, and other celebrations were canceled.

In Baghdad, gunmen wounded a Shi’ite endowment employee who was driving through Kadhimiya. A blast in Tahreer Square wounded three people, including a civilian.

An Islamic State of Iraq leader was killed after he fired upon security forces in Mosul.

A bullet-riddled corpse was found near Kut.

Two soldiers were wounded in a blast in Shurqat.

Author: Margaret Griffis

Margaret Griffis is a journalist from Miami Beach, Florida and has been covering Iraqi casualties for Antiwar.com since 2006.