The Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) chief administrator Paul Bremer described the attack as horrific and cowardly. ‘This senseless attack is not just against the person of Aquila al-Hashimi, it is an attack against the people of Iraq and against the common goals we share for the establishment of a fully democratic government,’ he said in a statement.

Al-Hashimi, one of only three women on the US appointed council, is the only member to have served in the administration of former president Saddam Hussein, where she held a senior position in the Iraqi Foreign Affairs Ministry. Al-Hashimi had been expected to travel to New York for a meeting of the UN General Assembly on 24 September.