Tags: car | bombs | mayhem | iraq

Five Iraq Car Bombs Kill At Least 50

Friday, 23 Apr 2010 09:45 AM

BAGHDAD - A series of five car bombs, three during prayers at Shiite mosques in Baghdad, and other attacks across Iraq killed 58 people on Friday, days after the government said al-Qaida was on the run.

The lunchtime violence underscored the unrest that continues to plague the nation whose politicians are struggling to form a government more than six weeks after a general election seen as crucial to its long-term stability.

Two car bombs in the impoverished district of Sadr City, one close to a political office of Shiite radical leader Moqtada al-Sadr and another at a market in the area killed 39 people and wounded 45, a security official said.

A third car bomb that exploded outside a Shiite mosque in Al-Ameen district in the east of the capital killed eight people and wounded 13, he said.

Earlier, at Abdel Hadi al-Chalabi mosque, named after the father of former deputy prime minister Ahmed Chalabi, a car bomb killed five people and wounded 14, he added.

No one immediately claimed responsibility for the deadly attacks in Baghdad but the sequence of car bombings bore the hallmark of al-Qaida.

The attacks in the capital followed early morning violence in Al-Anbar, a Sunni Arab province west of Baghdad, where an anti-terror judge's home was targeted in a sequence of explosions that killed six people.

The judge escaped unharmed but two of his sons were wounded.

Friday's violence came four days after Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki said al-Qaida in Iraq (AQI) was "bleeding" and its leaders "falling" after an Iraqi-U.S. military operation on Sunday purportedly killed its top two leaders.

Abu Omar al-Baghdadi, the political leader of AQI, and Abu Ayub al-Masri, an Egyptian militant and the insurgent group's self-styled "minister of war," died on Sunday, according to Iraqi and U.S. officials.

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden said the "deaths are potentially devastating blows to al-Qaida in Iraq."

Defence analysts, however, cautioned that Iraq's fledgling security forces must also remove AQI's mid-level commanders if attacks, such as those that have rocked Baghdad in the past eight months, are to stop.

The conflict-wracked country held parliamentary elections on March 7, the second such vote since Saddam Hussein was ousted in a U.S.-led invasion in 2003. Maliki narrowly lost to his main challenger, former premier Iyad Allawi.

Allawi won 91 seats to Maliki's 89 but neither came close to the 163 seats needed to form a government on their own, ushering in weeks of as yet fruitless negotiations to put together a ruling coalition in a 325-seat parliament.

Copyright © 2010 AFP. All rights reserved.

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BAGHDAD - A series of five car bombs, three during prayers at Shiite mosques in Baghdad, and other attacks across Iraq killed 58 people on Friday, days after the government said al-Qaida was on the run.
car,bombs,mayhem,iraq
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2010-45-23
Friday, 23 Apr 2010 09:45 AM
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