May was Iraq’s deadliest month in over five years: UN

Baghdad, June 3 (IANS/EFE) May was the deadliest month in Iraq in more than five years with 1,045 people killed in acts of terrorism and violence, up from 712 violent deaths in April, the United Nations’ mission in that country said in a statement.

A total of 2,397 people were wounded in May due to escalating sectarian violence.

Baghdad was the hardest-hit province in terms of numbers of victims and attacks, according to the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq, which did not indicate the casualty figures for the capital city.

The UN’s special envoy for Iraq, Germany’s Martin Kobler, described the toll as a “sad record” and urged Iraqi leaders to “act immediately to stop this intolerable bloodshed”.

Earlier this week, Kobler had warned that Iraq was headed for an uncertain future if it did not adopt urgent measures to remedy the current situation.

He, therefore, called on Iraqi politicians to launch an immediate dialogue “to resolve the political impasse and not let terrorists benefit from their political differences”.

Iraq has been plunged into a serious political and security crisis, exacerbated by Sunni protests against the government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, a Shiite. The protesters say Sunni-majority provinces are suffering discrimination.

Amid the rising toll and under pressure from Sunni provinces demanding reforms, the prime minister May 20 announced a major overhaul of his government’s security strategy.



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