Blasts at Shiite targets kill at least 15

Two explosions hit Shiite targets in northern Baghdad after sundown today, killing at least 15 people and wounding 72, police said. The attacks raised the death toll for the day to at least 56.

Two explosions hit Shiite targets in northern Baghdad after sundown today, killing at least 15 people and wounding 72, police said. The attacks raised the death toll for the day to at least 56.

Police officials said either a car bomb or a mortar had hit the Abdel Hadi Chalabi mosque in the Hurriyah neighbourhood, killing 14 and wounding 62. Mortar fire at the Imam Kadhim shrine in the Kazimiyah neighbourhood on the opposite side of the Tigris River killed one and wounded 10.

A Sunni mosque in the Hurriyah neighbourhood had been bombed before dawn the same day.

Earlier in the day in Baghdad there had been five explosions – including three car bombs, a suicide attacker wearing an explosives belt and a blast near the National Theatre – killing 41 people and wounding scores.

The suicide attacker had joined a line of people waiting to buy kerosene before detonating the explosives strapped to his body, witnesses said in the eastern New Baghdad neighbourhood. The blast killed 23 people and injured 51, said Interior Ministry official Maj. Falah al-Mohammedawi.

A car bomb targeting a police patrol in the same neighbourhood killed nine people and injured 17 – all civilians – said police Lt. Alu Abbas and medic Rahim al-Waedi.

Another car bomb exploded near a Shiite mosque in the crowded south-eastern Karada neighbourhood, killing four people and injuring 16, said al-Mohammedawi.

Police said the vehicle was parked next to a small market opposite the Timimi mosque, which was closed for repairs. But witnesses said the vehicle was driven by a suicide attacker.

Distraught residents rushed to the scene, as firefighters fought back flames from burning cars.

A roadside bomb targeting the convoy of a defence ministry adviser killed five soldiers and injured seven others, ministry spokesman Mohammed al-Askari said. The adviser, Lt. Gen. Daham Radhi al-Assal, escaped without harm, he said.

A fifth blast took place in an open area near the national theatre, al-Mohammedawi said. Initial police reports indicated a mortar blast. There were no reports of casualties.

Earlier in the day in Baghdad there had been five explosions – including three car bombs, a suicide attacker wearing an explosives belt and a blast near the National Theatre – killing 41 people and wounding scores.

The suicide attacker had joined a line of people waiting to buy kerosene before detonating the explosives strapped to his body, witnesses said in the eastern New Baghdad neighbourhood. The blast killed 23 people and injured 51, said Interior Ministry official Maj. Falah al-Mohammedawi.

A car bomb targeting a police patrol in the same neighbourhood killed nine people and injured 17 – all civilians – said police Lt. Alu Abbas and medic Rahim al-Waedi.

Another car bomb exploded near a Shiite mosque in the crowded south-eastern Karada neighbourhood, killing four people and injuring 16, said al-Mohammedawi.

Police said the vehicle was parked next to a small market opposite the Timimi mosque, which was closed for repairs. But witnesses said the vehicle was driven by a suicide attacker.

Distraught residents rushed to the scene, as firefighters fought back flames from burning cars.

A roadside bomb targeting the convoy of a defence ministry adviser killed five soldiers and injured seven others, ministry spokesman Mohammed al-Askari said. The adviser, Lt. Gen. Daham Radhi al-Assal, escaped without harm, he said.

A fifth blast took place in an open area near the national theatre, al-Mohammedawi said. Initial police reports indicated a mortar blast. There were no reports of casualties.

Later, at about 9pm local time, there was the sound of what appeared to be artillery or tank fire coming from south-west Baghdad’s notorious Dora district.

The Tuesday night attacks were clearly a continuation of sectarian violence that erupted in the country after a Shiite shrine was bombed in the predominantly Sunni city of Samarra on Wednesday.

Authorities had imposed a two-day round-the-clock curfew on Baghdad and in three neighbouring provinces over the weekend. That combined with a vehicle ban in the capital from Sunday to until dawn on Monday had briefly calmed the sectarian violence.

More in this section

IE_logo_newsletters

Select your favourite newsletters and get the best of Irish Examiner delivered to your inbox