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25 June 2024

Seven killed in Iraq attacks


A spate of gun and bomb attacks across northern and central Iraq on Saturday killed seven people and left four others wounded, security officials said.

In the disputed northern city of Kirkuk, a Shiite Turkman chemicals specialist for the state-owned North Oil Company was killed by a magnetic "sticky bomb" attached to his car.

Hussein Mohsen Maqsud, a member of Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's Dawa Party, had just left his home when the explosion occurred, a police officer and a party official said.

Also in Kirkuk, a civilian was killed in a gun attack in the north of the city, 240 kilometres (150 miles) north of Baghdad, the police officer said.

In the Iraqi capital, an anti-Qaeda militiaman was killed and a policeman was wounded by a gun attack on a checkpoint in Saidiyah, south Baghdad, an interior ministry official said.

The militiaman was a member of the Sahwa, or Awakening Council, which is comprised of Sunni Arab tribesmen who sided with the US military against Al-Qaeda from late 2006, helping turn the tide of Iraq's bloody insurgency.

In Babil province, south of Baghdad, a civilian was killed by gunmen in a village northeast of provincial capital Hilla, a police major said. In a separate incident in Babil, three people were wounded by two katyusha rockets that had been intended for a nearby US military base, according to the major.

Two men were also killed in Diyala province, north of the capital, in separate attacks, an official in the provincial security command centre said.

Taha Yasin was killed by gunmen in Abu Garma village, east of Diyala capital Baquba, while Internet cafe owner Hussein Tamimi was killed by shooters using silenced weapons in Baladruz, southeast of Baquba, according to the official.

And in Mosul, police said a taxi driver was killed by gunmen in the west of the main northern city.

Saturday's attacks come with less than a month to go before US troops are to have completed their withdrawal from Iraq. Around 7,000 US military personnel now remain in the country.

Violence has declined in Iraq since its peak in 2006 and 2007, but attacks remain common. A total of 187 people were killed in November, according to official figures.