U.N. envoy to Iraq condemns recent wave of attacks

Martin Kobler, the outgoing U.N. envoy in Iraq, strongly condemned a series of recent attacks and appealed to all parties to work together toward a peaceful resolution, the U.N. said on Sunday.

At least 30 people were reportedly killed in multiple car bombings on Saturday at the end of the day-long fast Muslims observe during the month of Ramadan. Kobler, the special representative of the secretary-general and the head of the U.N. Assistance Mission for Iraq, condemned the bombings and other violent acts that killed and injured hundreds of individuals.

"These criminal acts targeting Muslims praying in mosques or gathering after breaking their fast are senseless," Kobler said. "The holy month of Ramadan should be a time for spirituality and forgiveness, instead of increasing violence and division. I am deeply saddened that my last words as the SRSG for Iraq have to be linked to violence and criminal acts. I call on all Iraqis not to let violence prevail and to work together toward peace and dialogue, the only sustainable solution."

During his final briefing to the U.N. Security Council, Kobler said there was an alarming scale of renewed violence in Iraq in the last four months. Close to 3,000 people were killed and more than 7,000 were wounded in the violence.

Kobler warned that with violence growing, perpetrators could be taking advantage of the instability caused by an ongoing political stalemate and the current crisis in nearby Syria.