Suicide bombings in Baghdad and Mosul took the lives of at least 32 Iraqis Nov. 1. The following day, three separate attacks in Mosul—two car bombs, including one at a crowded market, and an armed assault on Sunni Arab political leaders—left at least 11 dead and 41 injured. The attacks come amid a power struggle between Iraq’s Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki and the Kurdish regional government over al-Maliki’s proposal to create new tribal councils that would answer to his government. Kurds are trying to expand their autonomous zone in the north, and Kurdish leaders fear the new councils could become local militias that the government could use against them in the north. (NYT, Dec. 3; DPA, Dec. 2; NYT, Dec. 1)
Meanwhile, some 2,000 Iraqi refugees protested in Syria’s Sayydeh Zeinab district against the new US-Iraqi security pact, with slogans saying it aims to legitimize the “US occupation to Iraq.” (AlSumaria TV, Dec. 3)
See our last posts on Iraq and the Status of Forces Agreement, and the struggle for Kurdistan.