UK & World News

  • 15 January 2014, 9:57

'Dozens' Killed In Bomb Attacks In Iraq

Up to 52 people have been killed in a series of bomb blasts across Iraq, according to reports.

Half a dozen car bombs exploded across the Iraqi capital Baghdad's mostly Shi'ite districts, killing 34 people and wounding 71, police and hospital sources said.

And, in the deadliest single incident, a bomb blew up in a funeral tent in Shatub, south of the northern town of Baquba, where mourners were marking the death two days ago of a Sunni Muslim pro-government fighter.

Eighteen people were killed and 16 wounded, according to one report.

This latest attack indicates that, two years after US troops left Iraq, violence has climbed back to its highest levels since the Sunni-Shi'ite bloodshed of 2006-2007, when tens of thousands of people were killed.

Al Qaeda-linked militants are said to be behind the attacks which are mostly directed at state targets, Shi'ite civilians and Sunnis seen as loyal to the Shi'ite-led government.

The violence occurred amid a continuing standoff between the Iraqi army and Sunni militants who overran the city of Falluja west of Baghdad more than two weeks ago in a challenge to prime minister Nuri al-Maliki's government.

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