Videos show rising brutality with 4,000 killed since April

The mob strung up the suspected terrorist’s shirtless body by the feet and set it ablaze on a street on the outskirts of the Iraqi capital, a tire placed underneath to fuel the flames. In grainy footage of the immolation this week, police appeared to do little to stop the vigilantes’ street justice.

In another video issued in recent days, jihadi militants who took over a major highway in western Iraq stop three Syrian truck drivers, interrogate them, then gun them down, believing them to be members of the Alawite sect.

The two incidents, confirmed by police, illustrate in stark terms the increasing brutality of the unrest gripping Iraq, fueling complaints that security forces are unable to contain it.

Violence inside Iraq has accelerated in recent months to levels not seen since 2008, with more than 4,000 people killed since the start of April.

CAIRO, Egypt

After crackdown, protests bring mostly small crowds

Reeling from a fierce security crackdown, the Muslim Brotherhood brought out mostly scattered, small crowds Friday in its latest protests of Egypt’s military coup.

While the remnants of the Brotherhood’s leadership are still able to exhibit strong coordination from underground, the arrests of thousands of its supporters and members — and the fear of more bloodshed — have weakened its ability to mobilize the streets.

The day’s largest single Cairo rally was more than 10,000 people outside the presidential palace. However, the majority of protests Friday were smaller than in the past, consisting of several hundred protesters or fewer around the country.


Man’s death from MERS raises toll of virus to 50

The death of a Jeddah man brought to 50 the number of deaths worldwide attributed to the MERS coronavirus, the World Health Organization said Friday.

The 38-year-old was the latest to succumb to the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus, which was first identified by British researchers last September.

Saudi Arabia is at the center of the contagion, accounting for 43 MERS coronavirus deaths since it began last year. Researchers have found the virus in bats in the kingdom.

The MERS coronavirus triggers flu-like symptoms and can lead to kidney failure and severe pneumonia. The WHO describes the virus as a “threat to the entire world.”