15 Stories

New Iraqi Battle Has Odd Twist for US

It pits one American-trained force (Iraq) against another (Kurds)

(Newser) - Iraqi Kurds voted for independence from Iraq last month, and one tangible result of the vote emerged Monday: Iraqi forces moved in. Baghdad, which considered the referendum illegal, is worried about losing control of the oil-rich Kirkuk region in the north. As a result, state-backed militias seized two oil fields... More »

Every Iraqi Urged to Pick Up a Weapon

Iraq's top cleric says 'everyone who can' must fight

(Newser) - Iraq's top Shiite cleric issued a statement during Friday prayers today, calling on everyone—Shiite and Sunni alike—to fight back against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, the New York Times reports. It is "the legal and national responsibility of whoever can hold a weapon, to... More »

33 Killed at Sunni Protest Site in Iraq

'The peaceful demonstrations are over': tribal leader

(Newser) - Some 33 civilians have been reported dead after Iraqi security forces took on Sunni protesters near the city of Kirkuk. Almost 100 people were wounded in the fighting, local officials say; the Ministry of Defense says 20 "gunmen" and three soldiers were killed and 75 people arrested. Sunnis across... More »

Attacks Across Iraq Kill at Least 39

10 cities around Iraq hit by insurgent bombings, gunmen

(Newser) - Insurgents killed at least 39 people in a wave of attacks against Iraqi security forces earlier today, gunning down soldiers at an army post and bombing police recruits waiting in line to apply for jobs, officials said. The violence, which struck at least 10 cities across the nation, highlighted militant... More »

Bombings Sweep Iraq on Anniversary of US Invasion

And comes ahead of next week's Arab League summit

(Newser) - Car bombs exploded in cities across Iraq today, including Baghdad, Fallujah, and Kirkuk, in a spate of violence that both marks the ninth anniversary of the US invasion of Iraq, and presages the Arab League's summit in Baghdad next week. The attacks struck eight cities in all, killing at... More »

56 Killed in Blasts Across Iraq

Dozens wounded; explosions end weeks of relative peace

(Newser) - Bombs struck more than a dozen Iraqi cities this morning, killing 56 and wounding dozens more. The coordinated explosions mark the first major violence in a comparatively peaceful month of Ramadan, the AP notes; the violence comes as as officials debate whether to maintain a US presence in the country... More »

Iraq Passes Election Law, Clears Way for US Pullout

Vote set for Jan. 21, US will begin withdrawal 60 days later

(Newser) - Iraq's parliament passed a long-delayed law yesterday paving the way for the planned January election to go forward, sidestepping a crisis that could have delayed the US troop withdrawal. The head of Iraq's electoral commission quickly proposed Jan. 21 for the election, five days after the earlier scheduled date. The... More »

Kurds Threaten to Block Iraqi Election

Dispute over Kirkuk holds up passage of new election law

(Newser) - A dispute over the oil-rich province of Kirkuk is threatening to delay the Iraqi elections scheduled for January and push Arab-Kurd tensions past the breaking point. Kurdish lawmakers in the Iraqi parliament have vowed to block a vote on a new election law unless authorities agree to use voter records... More »

Iraq Busts Baby Suicide Bombers

Security forces swoop on cell of al-Qaeda-groomed kids

(Newser) - Iraqi security forces say they have smashed a cell of kids recruited to become al-Qaeda suicide bombers, the Times of London reports. Military officials have arrested four children under the age of 14 they believe were preparing to carry out attacks in the northern city of Kirkuk and had been... More »

Women's Rights Activist Beheaded in Iraq

Hussain headed women's league in Kurdish Communist Party

(Newser) - Armed men yesterday stormed the home of a women's rights activist and Kurdish leader and beheaded her, reports CNN. Nahla Hussain, a 37-year-old married mom of two, was the leader of the women's league of the Kurdish Communist Party. She was alone in her home in the volatile northern town... More »

Suicide Bomber Kills 55 in Iraqi Restaurant


(Newser) - A suicide bomber killed 55 people and wounded 120 in a crowded restaurant in northern Iraq today, as Kurdish officials were meeting there with Arab tribal leaders to discuss long-standing ethnic tensions, the AP reports. It appeared to be the deadliest attack in Iraq in nearly 6 months.The blast... More »

Iraq Passes Election Law, But Skirts Key Issues

No deal on control over northern oil hub, representation of minority groups

(Newser) - The Iraqi parliament today passed a long-delayed law establishing provincial elections, a step the government hopes will protect recent security gains by opening the political process. The first elections are expected in January, the New York Times reports, but questions remain about how to ensure representation for Iraq’s religious... More »

Rice Pops Up in Iraq to Plead for Peace

Calls for reconciliation on surprise visit

(Newser) - Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice arrived in Iraq for a surprise visit today to plead for increased efforts at reconciliation, Reuters reports. She flew into the ethnically mixed northern city of Kirkuk—which some expect to be the next flashpoint for violence. The city's Kurds, Arabs, and Turkmen are deeply... More »

UN Stepping Up Work in Iraq

Four years after bombing killed 22, UN re-engaged

(Newser) - The United Nations is stepping up its work in Iraq in a bid to land a final peace—four years after a terrorist bomb in the UN compound in Baghdad killed 22 officials. "Three years of horror have led nowhere. It only produced tit-for-tat destruction and the displacement of... More »

6,000 Iraqi Sunnis Vow to Aid US

Iraqi civilian forces help decrease violence as refugees return home

(Newser) - Almost 6,000 Sunni Arab civilians in Iraq turned against Al-Qaeda yesterday and signed a pact to help US forces police possible insurgent escape routes. As insurgents seek to gain a foothold in the semi-autonomous north, American officials hailed the alliance, which is the Iraq war’s largest single volunteer... More »

15 Stories