Iraq: 27 killed, 77 wounded in separate attacks across Iraq

14th Jul 2013

BAGHDAD, (Xinhua): At least 27 people were killed and 77 others wounded in separate violent attacks across Iraq on Saturday, including a bombing attack against a Sunni mosque in the capital city, police said.

A roadside bomb went off on Saturday evening near the Alid bin Alwalead Mosque in the Dora area in southern Baghdad, killing at least 13 people and injuring 30 others, a local police source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

The blast went off around 10:00 p.m.(1900 GMT) while worshippers were leaving the mosque, a largely Sunni Muslim area. Witnesses said bodies were thrown back by the power of the explosion.

Iraq is seeing its worst eruption of violence in half a decade. At least 120 people were killed and more than 200 others wounded in waves of violent attacks across Iraq during the past three days.

Instability raised fears that the country is heading back toward a full-blown civil conflict, though the level of violence is still well below the height of sectarian bloodshedding in 2006 and 2007, when the monthly death toll sometimes exceeded 3,000.

Another roadside bomb killed two people and wounded three others in Madain, some 30 km south of Baghdad, the source added.

Also on Saturday evening, four people were killed and 13 others wounded when a suicide car bomb attacked a funeral in the village of Zahra, some 75 km northeast of Baghdad, he said.

A car bomb exploded near a football playground late Saturday evening in the Al-Jamiaa district in western Baghdad, killing three people and injuring 15 others, most of them young men, an interior ministry source told Xinhua.

Earlier in the day, five people were killed and 16 others wounded in separate bombings and shootings across Iraq, according to other police sources.

In the eastern province of Diyala, two people were killed and nine wounded, including three children, when a roadside bomb went off near a house in the town of Maqdadiyah, some 100 km northeast of Baghdad, a provincial police source told Xinhua.

In a separate incident, two fighters of the government-backed Sahwa paramilitary group were wounded when a roadside bomb hit their vehicle near the town of Hibhib, about 80 km northeast of Baghdad, the source said.

The Sahwa militia, also known as the Awakening Council or the Sons of Iraq, include some former anti-U.S. insurgent groups, who turned their rifles against the al-Qaida network after the latter exercised indiscriminate killings against both Shiite and Sunni Muslim communities.

In the northern city of Kirkuk, gunmen shot dead a soldier and wounded another in the southwestern part of the city, located some 250 km north of Baghdad, a local police source told Xinhua.

Meanwhile, Kirkuk province’s Operations Command, responsible for security in the oil-rich province, ordered all coffee shops and teahouses in the provincial capital to close one day after a deadly suicide bombing inside a cafe that killed 33 people and wounded 26.

In another northern city of Mosul, gunmen stormed the house of a traffic police officer and shot him dead in al-Shifaa neighborhood in the western part of the city, some 400 km north of Baghdad, a local police anonymously told Xinhua.

Near Baghdad, a roadside bomb struck a police patrol in Abu Ghraib area, some 25 km west of Baghdad, killing a policeman and wounding two others, a local police said.

Separately, Haider al-Zanbour, a council member of Babil province escaped unharmed two roadside bomb explosions close to his convoy while traveling Saturday afternoon near the town of Iskandriyah, some 50 km south of Baghdad, an interior ministry source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

The blasts wounded two of Zanbour’s bodyguards and caused damage to one of his vehicles, the source said.

Iskandriyah is part of the once restive area, dubbed Triangle of Death, which is a cluster of towns scattered north of Babil’s provincial capital city of Hilla.

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