Deadly sui­cide bomb­ings rock Iraq’s Ra­madi

The Pak Banker - - 6i Nternational -

BAGHDAD: Two sui­cide bombers blew them­selves up on Mon­day and killed seven peo­ple at the govern­ment com­pound in the pro­vin­cial cap­i­tal of Ra­madi, lo­cal of­fi­cials in the Iraqi prov­ince of An­bar said.

In­sur­gents fre­quently go af­ter govern­ment tar­gets in ef­fort to desta­bi­lize the U.S.backed au­thor­i­ties, es­pe­cially now as Amer­i­can troops pre­pare to leave by the end of next year.

The first blast oc­curred when a sui­cide bomber drove a minibus packed with ex­plo­sives into the en­trance of the main govern­ment com­pound of the city, said of­fi­cial spokesman Mo­hammed Fathi.

As peo­ple gath­ered to ob­serve the de­struc­tion, an­other man det­o­nated his ex­plo­sive vest in their midst, said po­lice and hos­pi­tal of­fi­cials.

The of­fi­cials said in ad­di­tion to the seven dead, an­other 30 peo­ple were in­jured by the blasts. Con­sec­u­tive blasts meant to catch by­standers and res­cue per­son­nel be­came a hall­mark of al-Qaida's tac­tics in Iraq in the past few years.

Ra­madi is the seat of the An­bar pro­vin­cial govern­ment and used to be a strong­hold of al-Qaida. But re­cently, lo­cal mili­tias have man­aged to bring a mea­sure of calm to the city and prov­ince.

The com­plex, which houses var­i­ous govern­ment agen­cies, in­clud­ing the gover­nor's of­fices, has been bombed twice this year.

In July, a fe­male sui­cide bomber blew her­self up at a re­cep­tion room out­side the gover­nor's of­fice. Ear­lier this month, a sui­cide bomber ex­ploded out­side the of­fice com­plex, killing 17 peo­ple, in­clud­ing women and el­derly peo­ple wait­ing to col­lect wel­fare checks.

The Is­lamic State of Iraq, an al-Qaida front group, claimed re­spon­si­bil­ity for a De­cem­ber 2009 bomb­ing of the same com­plex. An­bar's Gover­nor, Qasim al-Fa­hadawi, lost a leg in that blast. In a sep­a­rate in­ci­dent Mon­day, three mem­bers of the same fam­ily were killed when a road­side bomb hit their car out­side the town of Du­jail, 50 miles (80 kilo­me­ters) north of Baghdad. -Ap

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