Bombings kill at least 64 in Iraq

  • AFP, Baghdad
  • |
  • Updated: Jul 29, 2013 22:07 IST

Attacks mainly targeting Shiite-majority areas of Iraq killed at least 54 people on Monday, while security forces killed 10 militants, officials said, as the interior ministry warned of civil war.

More than 800 people have now been killed in violence so far this month, according to AFP figures based on security and medical sources - an average of upwards of 27 a day.

And more than 3,000 people have been killed since the beginning of the year, a surge in unrest that the Iraqi government has failed to stem.

On Monday, 11 car bombs hit nine different areas of Baghdad, seven of them Shiite-majority, while another exploded in Mahmudiyah south of the capital.

Two more car bombs exploded in Kut, while two hit Samawa and another detonated in Basra, all south of Baghdad.

A roadside bomb also killed five policemen, including a lieutenant colonel, north of Tikrit, while a magnetic "sticky bomb" killed a police captain in Anbar province.

The attacks killed a total of at least 54 people and wounded at least 232.

The interior ministry warned of the consequences of the bloodshed.

Iraq is faced with "open war waged by the forces of bloody sectarianism aiming to plunge the country into chaos and reproduce civil war", the ministry said in a statement.

Iraq was racked by a bloody Sunni-Shiite sectarian conflict that peaked in 2006-2007, when thousands of people were killed because of their religious affiliation or forced to abandon their homes under threat of death.

The interior ministry on Monday called for the "full support and cooperation of citizens with the security forces".

Army and police forces meanwhile killed 10 militants west of Tikrit, police officers said.

They also destroyed the militants' camp, carried out controlled detonations of three car bombs and seized explosive belts, rocket-propelled grenade launchers, ammunition and explosives, they said.

One of the Baghdad bombs exploded near where day labourers wait for work in the overwhelmingly Shiite area of Sadr City, killing five people and wounding 17.

Debris, including what appeared to be the remains of the vehicle that held the explosives, covered the street around the site of the blast, an AFP journalist reported.

The explosion also badly damaged shops in the area, and the force of the blast smashed a white minibus, throwing it on its side.

 

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