[JURIST] The recent wave of violence in Iraq was condemned [press release] Monday by the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) [official website]. UN Deputy Special Representative of the Secretary-General (DSRSG) for Political Affairs Gyoray Busztin [official profile] denounced the wave of attacks that began over the weekend, reportedly a coordinated string of bombings and shootings in 13 cities, including Baghdad, that has killed at least 91 people and injured nearly 200 more. DSRSG Busztin extended his condolences to the families of the deceased and called for the perpetrators to “be held to account,” noting that the attacks are particularly heinous because for taking place on the first days of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which celebrates peace and reconciliation. No group has claimed responsibility for the wave of assaults but a senior Iraqi security official blamed Sunni Muslim militants [Reuters report] of the local wing of al Qaeda [JURIST news archive], as most of the bombings and shootings took place in areas with high Shiite populations.
In May the UNAMI released a report stating that Iraq’s human rights situation remains fragile [JURIST report], calling on the government to increase its effort to provide an equal environment in which all citizens are protected under the law regardless of their social, religious, ethnic and other distinguishable status. Earlier in May, Human Rights Watch [advocacy website] reported [JURIST report] that mass arrests and incommunicado detentions continue in Baghdad’s prison that was planned to be closed. In 2011, UNAMI and the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) [official website] reported [JURIST report] that human rights violations continue in several regions of Iraq. Similar findings were made several months earlier by Amnesty International [advocacy website] in its report [text, PDF] revealing [JURIST report] that governmental authorities shot and killed protesters while detaining and torturing political activists. In 2010, it also reported [JURIST report] on the government’s unlawful arrests and tortures against thousands of detainees.