Just 10 days after taking over his new post, US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta is in Iraq to pressure leaders into deciding whether they will ask for U.S. troops to remain in Iraq after a year-end withdrawal deadline but that decision will likely not happen for another couple of weeks. Not only have four Iraqis been killed today, so has one U.S. soldier. Another five Iraqis were wounded in the latest violence. Also, Shi’ite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr has rescinded his threat to reactivate the Mahdi Army.
Iraqi farmers blocked an Iranian border crossing at Munzuria in protest against the diversion of a shared river that irrigates Iraq’s breadbasket.
A mass grave thought to contain the bodies of 222 Kurds killed in 1987 was discovered in Shanafiya.
Gunmen killed two people and wounded two others in Kirkuk.
An explosion at a concrete factory in Garma left one person dead and another wounded.
In Mussayab, gunmen killed the son of the mayor.
In Baghdad, a blast targeting a deputy minister wounded two bodyguards in Yarmouk.
A suspect was captured in Shuahuda.
Two suspects were arrested in Suwayra.
A joint U.S.-Iraqi operation in Dour netted four suspects, two of them former high-ranking army officers.
Near Mosul, an oil pipeline was damaged in a bomb attack.