Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon was shocked and saddened by the series of attacks that took place Tuesday in northern Iraq in the villages of Qahtaniya, al-Jazeera and Tal Uzair, which reportedly left at least 200 people dead and many more wounded. He extended his deepest condolences to the families of those killed and his wishes for a full and speedy recovery to those wounded.
The Secretary-General reiterated in the strongest terms his condemnation of such attacks against civilian targets, including the one on a bridge in Taji, north of Baghdad, on the same day. Nothing can justify such indiscriminate violence against innocent civilians.
The Secretary-General reiterated the urgent need for all Iraqi leaders, regardless of their political or religious affiliations, to work together to protect civilian lives and to dedicate themselves towards a meaningful dialogue aimed at ending the violence and achieving lasting national reconciliation.
Asked what the latest incident demonstrates about the security situation in Iraq, the Spokeswoman noted that the United Nations continues to assess security conditions in Iraq regularly. At present, she added, the United Nations deploys up to 65 international staff in the country.