Iraq in the News: Friday, February 18th

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Iraq protests turn violent and deadly

In the past few days a number of people have lost their lives and many more have been injured while protesting in Iraq. Yesterday in the Iraqi Kurdistan city of Sulaymaniyah, two protesters were killed when they were fired on by Kurdish security forces seeking to disperse the crowds.

Other protests throughout the country have seen deaths as well. Earlier in the week in the southern city of Kut, as may as three were reported killed after protesters attacked and set fire to various governmental buildings.

Iraq: At least two protestors dead – L.A. Times

Thee reported dead in Iraqi protests: L.A. Times

Refugees International warns U.S. not to forget Iraqi refugee crisis

Refugees International released a new field report detailing the work that remains to be done to aid Iraq’s displaced.  The report stresses that the next two years will be a definitive time in providing for these Iraqis and facilitating both safety for those seeking asylum as for those seeking to re-integrate as they return to their country.  With current debates in Washington focused on the the FY2011 and FY2012 budgets, Refugees International feels that it is imperative that money to aid programs related to helping displaced Iraqis not be cut. This risks of de-funding these programs could then prolong and exacerbate the crisis for generations to come.

Iraq’s Displaced: A stable region requires stable assistance – Refugees International

Belgium Overtakes Iraq’s record for longest time without a functioning Government

Belgium today has surpassed the 249 days that it took for Iraq to form its governing coalition, as rival French and Dutch speaking factions refuse to come to an agreement.  Sound familiar?  However, Belgium still has a long road to looking anything like Iraq.  Even after the formation of the new government, ministers have still not been appointed to the most vital security ministries, and candidates have yet to even be named.

Belgium takes a word record – in political dysfunction – Christian Science Monitor

Iraqi lawmakers approve new ministers; key security posts still remain – CNN


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