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Thousands mourn Iraqi bomb victims

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NAJAF, Iraq, Aug. 30 (UPI) -- Throngs of people gathered Saturday in Nakaf, Iraq, to mourn the deaths of dozens killed in a car bomb the previous day.

Among those killed in the Friday blast was Ayatollah Mohammad Baqir al-Hakim, one of the country's top Shiite clerics. He had just completed his Friday sermon at the Imam Ali Mosque prior to the blast.

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An aide to the Ayatollah told CNN some 126 people were killed in the attack and that the number was expected to rise as workers continued to search the rubble for more bodies, including that of the Ayatollah.

CNN said some 2,000 people also crowded the streets of Baghdad Saturday, shouting anti-American slogans and denouncing the Baath party of former leader Saddam Hussein.

Iraqi experts say they are concerned chaos and civil war could break out between the two different sects in Iraq.

A three-day mourning period, announced by the U.S.-appointed Iraq Governing Council, began Saturday.

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