Iraqi Shia militiamen have been fighting army troops for a third day in Basra and other parts of southern Iraq.
There have also been fierce clashes further north, with many casualties in Shia areas of Baghdad.
In the Sadr City district of the capital alone, about 30 people are estimated to have died since Tuesday in fighting between troops and the Mehdi Army militia.
Mortar and rocket fire also hit Baghdad's heavily protected Green Zone.
Many of Sadr City's residents are supporters of radical cleric Moqtada Sadr, who leads the Mehdi Army.
Some Sadrists are openly showing their contempt for US-backed Prime Minister Nouri Maliki.