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HindustanTimes Tue,21 Oct 2014

World

Suicide bombers hit Iraq security as attacks kill 27
AFP
Baghdad, October 30, 2013
First Published: 14:13 IST(30/10/2013)
Last Updated: 15:48 IST(30/10/2013)

Three suicide bombings killed 14 Iraqi security force members overnight, officials said on Wednesday, the deadliest in a series of attacks that left 27 people dead in two days.

The attacks come as Iraq witnesses its worst violence since 2008, a surge in unrest that has killed more than 5,400 people this year.

Since the beginning of 2013, AFP has recorded just 16 days in which there were no deaths from violence in Iraq, the most recent of which was May 24.

On Wednesday, a roadside bomb exploded near a police captain's car in Tikrit, north of Baghdad, killing a civilian and wounding the officer, police and a doctor said.

The attack followed suicide bombings that killed 19 people, among them 14 security forces members, during the night, according to security and medical officials.

In Tarmiyah, north of Baghdad, two suicide bombers attacked a house where a security meeting was taking place at about 11:30 pm (2030 GMT) on Tuesday, killing 11 people and wounding at least 20.

One bomber detonated explosives at a gate leading to the house, while the second managed to enter the building itself.

The dead were four soldiers, including a brigadier general, three police, among them a lieutenant colonel, and four Sahwa anti-al Qaeda fighters.

And near the northern city of Mosul, a suicide bomber detonated a vehicle rigged with explosives near a police checkpoint, killing eight people, among them three police, and wounding 25.

Militants, including those linked to al Qaeda, frequently target Iraqi security forces and other government employees.

Some 30 suicide bombers have managed to detonate explosives in attacks this month, while others were killed before they could do so.

Other attacks in Iraq killed seven more people on Tuesday, as Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki left for a visit to Washington, during which he will push for increased US support for the country's fight against insurgents.

The Iraqi government has so far failed to curb the heightened unrest this year, and experts say Baghdad should turn to longer-term efforts that build trust among citizens, especially members of the country's Sunni minority.

Widespread discontent among Iraq's Sunnis, who complain of being politically isolated and unfairly targeted by security forces, has been a major factor in the unrest, along with the civil war in neighbouring Syria, which has bolstered militants.

The level of violence rose sharply after security forces stormed a Sunni protest camp in northern Iraq in April, sparking clashes in which dozens died.

And while authorities have made some concessions aimed at placating the protesters and Sunnis in general, such as freeing prisoners and raising the salaries of Sunni anti-al Qaeda fighters, the underlying issues remain unaddressed.

Almost 700 people have been killed in violence so far this month, and over 5,400 since the beginning of the year, according to AFP figures based on security and medical sources.


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