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13 April 2024

Iraq bombs kill two Shiite pilgrims, two police


Bomb attacks against police and Shiite pilgrims in central Iraq on Saturday killed four people, two officers and two worshippers, and wounded 10 others, officials said.

In the former insurgent bastion of Fallujah, 60 kilometres (40 miles) west of Baghdad, a roadside bomb against a group of federal policemen killed two of them and wounded one other, according to federal police Captain Ali Abdulsaheb.

The attack occurred at around 7:00 pm (1600 GMT) near the Abdulaziz al-Samarraie mosque in the centre of Fallujah, part of Sunni Anbar province.

Two separate attacks against Shiite pilgrims ahead of Arbaeen commemorations later this month, meanwhile, killed two and wounded nine others, security and medical officials said.

In Mahmudiyah, which lies in a confessionally-mixed area south of Baghdad known as the Triangle of Death for the high levels of violence there in 2006 and 2007, a roadside bomb against a group of pilgrims killed one and wounded five others, officials from the ministries of interior and defence said.

And in the restive city of Baquba, capital of Diyala province north of Baghdad, a magnetic "sticky bomb" attached to a car transporting pilgrims exploded, killing one and wounding four, according to Firas al-Dulaimi, a doctor at the city's hospital, and a security official.

Arbaeen marks 40 days after the Ashura anniversary commemorating the killing of Imam Hussein, one of Shiite Islam's most revered figures, by the armies of the Caliph Yazid in 680 AD.

Attacks against Shiites in Baghdad and north Iraq on Thursday left 70 people killed and more than 100 wounded, the country's highest death toll since August, amid a political row between Shiite-led authorities and Iraq's main Sunni-backed bloc, stoking sectarian tensions.