Mon, May 02, 2011 - Page 5 News List

Iraq monthly death toll falls last month by about 15 percent


The number of Iraqis killed in violence last month fell by around 15 percent compared with the previous month, according to figures released yesterday.

A total of 211 Iraqis — 120 civilians, 56 policemen and 35 soldiers — died as a result of attacks last month, the monthly data compiled by the ministries of health, interior and defense showed.

Yesterday’s figures were around 15 percent lower than the monthly toll for March, when 247 Iraqis were killed.

A further 377 people were wounded last month: 190 civilians, 97 policemen and 90 soldiers. The figures also showed that 49 insurgents were killed and 199 arrested last month.

The figures were driven largely by three consecutive days of violence in which 40 people were killed.

On Saturday, a suicide blast in the main northern city of Mosul killed seven people, in nationwide unrest that claimed 13 lives overall.

A Sunni imam’s family and four Sunni brothers were shot dead in attacks in the restive central province of Diyala on Friday, a day after a suicide bomber killed 10 Shiite worshippers in a nearby mosque.

A spate of assassinations also took place last month, which officials warned could be a new trend indicating insurgent groups were adopting lower-cost methods to destabilize Iraq as local security forces have become more capable.

At least seven senior military and civilian officials were killed in the past two weeks, and at least three others have narrowly escaped being murdered.

The toll was released one day after the US military confirmed a soldier was killed in southern Iraq, the 11th death last month, making it the deadliest month for US forces since November 2009, according to a tally based on data compiled by independent Web site

About 45,000 US soldiers still remain stationed in Iraq.

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