The United Nations has reported that more than 800 people were killed in violence in Iraq during the month of August.
The UN report, issued on September 1, confirmed that a months-long uptick in violence in Iraq is continuing, although the figure for August was slightly lower than for July.
UN official Jacqueline Badcock told AFP that nearly 5,000 civilians have been killed and 12,000 wounded since the beginning of the year. Much of the violence has been provoked by suspicions that the predominantly Shi'ite government of Prime Minister Nuri al-Malaki is seeking to sideline the country's Sunni Muslim minority.
Insurgents have also been energized by the sectarian conflict in neighboring Syria.
Based on reporting by AFP and Reuters