At least 13 people were killed or found dead in the latest sectarian and political violence in Iraq.
In one incident, gunmen shot to death four people in separate incidents in Baghdad, Amarrah, Mosul and Basra, police said. Also Thursday, the bodies of nine men were found floating in separate places in the Tigris River, police and morgue officials said. At least two bodies were blindfolded, bound and shot, the AP reported.
Meanwhile, a confidential report from Britain's outgoing ambassador to Baghdad, William Patey, has warned that the war-torn country is sliding toward civil war and is likely to divide eventually along ethnic lines, according to the British Broadcasting Corp. Thursday.
Patey forwarded the document to Prime Minister Tony Blair, Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett and other leading legislators and military commanders, BBC reported. It added Patey also warned that to avoid a descent into civil war, there must be greater effort directed at policing militia groups, including Muqtada al-Sadr's Mahdi Army, which he said could develop into "a state within a state."