Condemning recent attacks on school and mosque, UN envoy calls for justice

Condemning recent attacks on school and mosque, UN envoy calls for justice

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Strongly condemning this weekend’s bombings of a university and a mosque which killed and injured hundreds of innocent civilians in Iraq, the top United Nations envoy to the country today called for those responsible for the criminal attacks to be brought to justice.

The Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Iraq, Ashraf Qazi, decried the bombings of Mustansiriya University in Baghdad and the Hay al-Umma Mosque outside the capital, saying that they are “intended to tear apart the Iraqi sense of community and national denominators that are essential for maintaining national unity.”

Mr. Qazi also said that “the targeting of higher education centres and places of worship by violent groups seeks to exacerbate sectarian tensions, and undermine the prospect for a better future together for all Iraqis.”

These bombings are the latest in a wave of attacks targeting civilians. Less than two weeks ago, more than 100 people were killed in a series of attacks, including the coordinated bombing of a crowded market in Baghdad.

The envoy urged the Government to apprehend those behind the attacks, and also advised Iraq’s political, religious and civil society leaders to ensure the sanctity of educational institutions and places of worship.