Thursday, February 23, 2012

At least 35 people killed by bombs in Iraq

Update:  The death toll rose to at least 50 later in the morning (Reuters).

At least 35 people have been killed and dozens injured in a wave of bombings and shootings across Baghdad. Officials said the attacks appeared to be targeting mainly police officers.
Nine people were killed in the worst attack, in the central Karrada district, which is mainly Shia. The blast, near a police checkpoint, shook buildings and damaged shops.
No group has yet said it was behind the violence.
Also on Thursday, a car bomb in killed six people in Kadhimiya, north of Baghdad, which is also Shia-dominated. Gunmen in the Sarafiya district of the capital also killed six at a police checkpoint, while
six people were killed and several wounded in four other attacks.

Also at least two people were killed in explosions in Baquba, the capital of Diyala province, north of Baghdad, police said.There are also reports of bombings in the provinces of Salahuddin and Kirkuk.
There are fears the death toll from Thursday's violence could rise.
Last week, at least 18 people were killed in a suicide attack near the Iraqi police academy in the capital.

Shia targets have come under increasing attack since the government of Shia Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki moved against senior members of the predominantly Sunni Iraqiya political bloc.
The day after US troops withdrew, a warrant was issued for the arrest of Vice-President Tariq al-Hashemi, who is accused of financing death squads.

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