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22 dead in Iraq bombings aimed at police and Shiite pilgrims

Nov. 13, 2013 at 1:17 PM   |   Comments

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BAQUBA, Iraq, Nov. 13 (UPI) -- Bombs that killed 22 people Wednesday in Iraq were aimed at security officers and at pilgrims marking a day important to Shiite Muslims, police said.

The deadliest attack was at a police checkpoint in Salahudin province, a Sunni-dominated area north of Baghdad, Xinhua, the Chinese government news agency, reported. Xinhua said it learned from a source in the provincial police a suicide bomber driving a truck loaded with explosives killed 10 people, including two police officers, and wounded eight, three of them officers.

The checkpoint was on a road into al-Alam, a town near Tikrit, Saddam Hussein's birthplace.

Eight people were killed and 30 injured in Diyala province in eastern Iraq when three roadside bombs exploded. The bombs were aimed at a procession of Shiite pilgrims in Baquba.

Thursday is the final day in the 10-day Ashura period, which marks the martyrdom in 680 A.D. of Imam Hussein, Muhammad's grandson and the third Shiite imam. Many of the pilgrims attacked in Baquba were believed headed for Karbala where Hussein is buried.

In Garma, about 30 miles west of Baghdad, bombs exploded in the houses of four police officers and a fifth was discovered and defused, Xinhua reported, citing a police source. Two civilians were killed and seven others wounded when one of the bombings was followed by a second blast that detonated as people were examining the damage.

No police officers were killed, but the four houses were heavily damaged.

In northern Iraq, a roadside bomb aimed at a military patrol killed a soldier near Kirkuk and wounded four of his comrades. A police officer was killed by a bomb in Abu Ghraib, 15 miles west of Baghdad.

The total number of wounded from the bombings was reported to be 58.

Almost 7,000 Iraqis were killed and 16,000 injured between January and October, the U.N. Assistance Mission for Iraq said.

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