Attacks on Iraqi minorities soar

By Jareer Mohammed

Azzaman, August 9, 2009

Attacks on Iraqi Christians and Muslim Shiites are on the rise, particularly in the northern city of Mosul.

Mosul is predominantly Sunni Muslim but it is also home to large communities of Christians and Shiites mainly Shebeks and Tukmen.

Conditions are tense in Mosul as both Arab Sunnis and Kurds have fallen out over territorial control and political representation in the provincial council.

The Kurds have lost their majority and as a result are working to administer their own areas by themselves.

As the sides battle over political, territorial and administrative issues, attacks on Christian and Shiite minorities have increased.

Bearing the brunt of these attacks are the Shiites in the Province of Nineveh of which Mosul is the capital.

The Shiites are neither Kurds nor Arabs but have allied themselves with the Shiite factions currently ruling the country.

They mainly live in villages and towns to the north and west of Mosul.

In the latest attack 31 Shiite Turkmen were killed and 71 wounded in a car bombing attack on Shreekhan, a village to the north west of Mosul.

There was also an attempt to blow up a house of a Christian family in which two people were injured.