At least 11 Iraqis were killed and 31 more were wounded in newly reported violence. Only one of a small number of attacks was significant, and it was the cause of most of today’s casualties.
In response to weeks of demonstrations, Massoud Barzani, president of Iraqi Kurdistan, has called for early elections in the semi-autonomous region. Iraq Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, meanwhile, demanded the Kurdish government recall Peshmerga fighters who are illegally operating in Kirkuk province.
Maliki also asked the heads of several formerly independent government bodies to set timelines for moving the bodies to his cabinet’s authority, while the Sadrists threatened to turn their back on him just a day after Ayad Allawi quit his role in the new government.
At least 10 Iraqis were killed and 26 more were wounded when a suicide bomber attacked a group of soldiers waiting to collect their salaries at a state-run bank in Haditha. Most of the casualties were soldiers.
Gunmen attacked a tribal chief’s home in Tal Afar, where they killed his son.
In Baghdad, two soldiers were wounded in a blast in the Tunis neighborhood. Three people were wounded, including a civilian, when a bomb exploded on Mahgreb Street.
Authorities in Abu Ghraib arrested two protest organizers. One is a human rights activist while the other is a medical student. This is just the latest accusation of harassment towards demonstrators across the country. Separately, Kirkuk, Diyala and Salah ad Din have imposed curfews due to expected protests tomorrow.
Twenty-four suspects were arrested in Basra province.
An al-Qaeda suspect was arrested in Mosul.
U.S. forces have begun to replace non-combat forces in four southern provinces, Missan, Basra, Muthanna and Thi-Qar.
An anonymous government official said that the al-Jazeera television channel is now allowed to reopen its Baghdad bureau, six years after being kicked out on allegations they were inciting violence.
In Turkey, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan accused the People’s Democracy Party of ties to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) after they called for the release of PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan. Earlier this week, the PKK downgraded their unilateral truce with Turkey, saying they will now defend themselves from attacks but continue to refrain from starting them. The PKK maintains bases in remote areas of northern Iraq.