Friday, May 31, 2013

Protests and violence continue in Iraq


That's Ramadi.  It's Friday in Iraq.  Like every Friday since December 21st, that means ongoing protests. The screen snap is from Iraqi Spring MC's footage of RamadiNational Iraqi News Agency reports, "Tens of thousands of citizens flocked to sit-in squares in Falluja, Ramadi before noon today to participate in the Friday prayers named by sitters/ Our movement path convince your Militias/."  Alsumaria reports Salahuddin Province saw big turn out in Tikrit, Samarra and Baiji (and look at the crowd in the photo Alsumaria has up). The protesters called out the bombings and shootings that have claimed lives across Iraq and they vowed that they would continue demonstrating until the Iraqi people are heard by the government.  Iraqi Spring MC reports that SWAT forces just surrounded Ramadi protesters in the last 20 minutes.

Nouri may have closed Baghdad to some vehicle traffic but he can't stop those in Baghdad from gathering as the Iraqi Spring MC photo below demonstrates (it's al-A'mirya in western Baghdad).


Kitabat notes that the vehicle ban in Baghdad doesn't have a set end date yet.  It also features a photo of the large turnout in al-A'mirya.

 It's the last day of May.  Through yesterday, Iraq Body Count counts 873 violent deaths so far this month.  ABC News Radio observes, "The international community is deeply concerned that the recent spate of violent episodes in Iraq triggered by simmering sectarian tensions could explode into a full-blown civil war."  Martin Kobler is United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon's Special Representative to Iraq.  Press TV quotes him stating, "I am seriously concerned.  This can get worse, and that's why I strongly advocate that this bloodletting is stopped and the situation does not deteriorate." Sameer N. Yacoub (AP) reports a Baghdad bombing has claimed 4 lives and left eleven people injured while a Falluja armed attack left 3 police officers dead and two more injured.

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