Dead­li­est day in months

Ten­sions be­tween Shi­ites and Sun­nis es­ca­late vi­o­lence in Iraq

The Kurdish Globe - - NATIONAL -

crack­down on a Sunni protest camp in the coun­try's north on April 23.

The dead­li­est blast on Fri­day struck wor­ship­pers as they were leav­ing the main Sunni mosque in Baqouba, a for­mer Sunni in­sur­gent strong­hold 35 miles northeast of Bagh­dad. Another ex­plo­sion went off shortly af­ter­ward as peo­ple gath­ered to help the wounded, leav­ing at least 41 dead and 56 wounded, ac­cord­ing to po­lice and hos­pi­tal of­fi­cials. Blood­ied bod­ies were strewn across the road out­side the mosque.

Later Fri­day, a road­side bomb ex­ploded dur­ing a Sunni fu­neral pro­ces­sion in Madain, about 12 miles south of Bagh­dad, killing eight mourn­ers and wound­ing 11, po­lice said. Two med­i­cal of­fi­cials con­firmed the ca­su­al­ties.

Another ex­plo­sion struck a cafe in Fal­lu­jah, 40 miles west of Bagh­dad, killing two peo­ple and wound­ing nine, ac­cord­ing to po­lice and hos­pi­tal of­fi­cials.

In Bagh­dad, a bomb ex­ploded near a shop­ping cen­ter dur­ing evening rush hour in the mainly Sunni neigh­bor­hood of Amariyah, killing 21 peo­ple and wound­ing 32. That was fol­lowed by another bomb in a com­mer­cial dis­trict in Dora, another Sunni neigh­bor­hood, which killed four peo­ple and wounded 22, ac­cord­ing to of­fi­cials.

All of­fi­cials spoke on con­di­tion of anonymity be­cause they are not au­tho- rized to brief re­porters.

It was the dead­li­est day since Sept. 9 when 92 peo­ple were killed, ac­cord­ing to an As­so­ci­ated Press tally.

The at­tacks on Sun­nis came af­ter two days of car bombs tar­get­ing Shi­ite ar- eas in Bagh­dad and other at­tacks that left 21 peo­ple dead on Thurs­day and 33 on Wednes­day.

The vi­o­lence was the lat­est to hit a Sunni Mus­lim house of wor­ship, a trend that has been on the rise. About 30 Sunni mosques have been at­tacked be­tween mid-April to mid-May, killing more than 100 Sunni wor­ship­pers.

The Iraqi Par­lia­ment in the at­ten­dance if In­te­rior Min­istry is ex­pected to hold a spe­cial ses­sion to­mor­row to dis­cuss the se­cu­rity is­sue.

Iraqis gather at the scene of a bomb at­tack in Baqouba, northeast of Bagh­dad on May 17.

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