Iraq: UN envoy strongly condemns coordinated attacks in Baghdad and Kirkuk

29 March 2013

The top United Nations official in Iraq today condemned in the strongest terms the coordinated attacks on several Husseiniyas in the capital Baghdad and the northern city of Kirkuk that killed and injured dozens, including Cleric Muhsin Al-Battat, Grand Ayatollah Al-Sistani's representative in Kirkuk.

“These are despicable and brutal acts of violence, particularly in such sensitive areas as Kirkuk,” said Martin Kobler, the Secretary-General's Special Representative and head of the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI).

“These acts will not undermine the true and deep believe in peaceful coexistence among the people of the symbolic province of Kirkuk,” Mr. Kobler added.

The attacks targeted several Husseiniyas, which are places of religious significance for Shia Muslims.

According to media reports, car bombs blasted three neighbourhoods in Baghdad and an area in southern Kirkuk within an hour of each other. The explosions hit just as people were gathering for Friday prayers.

Mr. Kobler extended his deep sympathy and sincere condolences to the families of the victims and wished a speedy recovery to those who were injured.

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