Iraq’s Prime Minister Iyad Allawi has said elections planned for January 30 will take place, despite ongoing violence. In a fresh sign of division, President Ghazi al Yawar, the government’s senior Sunni official, urged the United Nations on Tuesday to reconsider holding the election amid fears voters would be scared away from polling booths.
He warned the vote would fail if the insurgency kept away a significant number of Sunnis. But Allawi told a news conference the government was committed to running the elections on schedule, insisting he had a plan to safeguard voters but giving few details.
His statement came amid a spate of attacks throughout Iraq. Insurgents have been targeting Iraqi and foreign security forces daily ahead of the elections.
Several dozen people have been killed today alone. At least 15 people died when a suicide car bomber blew himself up inside a police academy in the city of Hilla south of Baghdad.
A leading Sunni politician was found dead in the northern city of Mosul, and in the capital the funeral took place of Baghdad’s governor who was shot dead on Tuesday.