In a string of near simultaneous attacks, gunmen attacked and killed eight policemen in Baghdad today, police said.
Assailants opened fire on a police patrol in eastern Baghdad, killing five policemen, police said.
The policemen had been asleep in their vehicle when two carloads of gunmen fired on them around 8am in the eastern New Baghdad neighbourhood of the capital, said Lt Col Ahmed Aboud.
The men had spent the night on patrol and fell asleep as they were waiting to be replaced by another patrol, he said. Their weapons were all in the back seat of their four-wheel drive, he said.
In another attack in the southern Dora neighbourhood, armed gunmen assassinated police Capt Haidir Mizhir Salih and another policeman as they were heading to work around 8am, said 1st Lt Mohammed Hanoun.
In a third drive-by shooting, unknown assailants fired on a police car at 8.15 am, killing one officer and wounding another, said Lt Col Guad Assad.
Their driver was also injured in the attack in eastern Zayouna neighbourhood, he said.
Insurgents have frequently targeted Iraqi security forces in their bid to further destabilise the country.