Updated at 5:45 p.m. EDT, August 21, 2008
U.S. Secretary of State
Condoleezza Rice dropped
in on Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki during a secret visit to Baghdad today.
As Sadrists demonstrated
against her visit, she said that a security pact is close to being finalized.
At least 13 Iraqis were killed and 14 more were wounded during the latest
attacks. Scores more were arrested, while the U.S. released a journalist in their
The U.S. military released
a Reuters photojournalist after holding him over three weeks without charging
him. The detention drew a great deal of criticism, as this was the third time
the Iraqi journalist was held without charges. U.S. authorities claim that they
are allowed to indefinitely hold anyone thought to be a threat.
the Iraqi Society for Human Rights called
on Saudi Arabia to give the 580 Iraqi detainees in their custody better treatment,
including fair trials and access to lawyers. This plea came only a couple days
after the son of a Sunni lawmaker disappeared
into the Iraqi justice system, where thousands are held indefinitely without charges
ever being pressed against them.
In Mosul, three
bodies were found separately; one was beheaded, while another belonged to
a policeman. A policeman
was killed during a shootout in a western neighborhood. In northern
Mosul, another one
policeman was killed and an officer was wounded during clashes. Two
policemen were killed in separate incidents downtown. Two suspects
in a separate incident.
In Baghdad, security contractors allegedly
killed one civilian
and wounded another during an incident in Bab al-Sharji. A roadside
one person and wounded four others in Jamiya. The director of an identification
office in Karrada was seriously
injured during a shooting. A bomb wounded
three civilians, also in Karrada. Gunmen killed
one person and wounded another during a drive-by shooting in a central location.
Two bodies were
found. Mortars struck the Green Zone, but no
casualties were reported. One
Iraqi soldier was killed and three more were wounded during security operations
that netted 147 suspects; some of those arrested may
have been captured at the Labor Ministry. Al-Qaeda laid
claim to to a bombing that killed a popular Sunni leader on Sunday.
Five suspects were captured
in Diyala province.
Four suspects were detained
in the greater Kirkuk area.
U.S. forces captured
Two bombs were defused
in Tal Keef.
Six roadside bombs were defused
in Amara after security forces discovered them along with other weapons..
Analysts are saying that
the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) is so weakened at this point that they are stepping
up small bombings in Turkey just to stay in the headlines.
by Margaret Griffis