Blasts rock Shi'ite areas of Baghdad

2013-03-19 10:00
(File, AP)

(File, AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Baghdad - A wave of car bombs and shootings mostly in Shi'ite areas in and around Baghdad on the eve of the 10th anniversary of the US-led invasion of Iraq killed at least 23 people on Tuesday.

At least a dozen car bombs and assassinations across the Iraqi capital also left another 88 people wounded, with officials warning the toll could rise, amid a spike in violence that has raised fresh questions about the capabilities of Iraqi security forces barely a month ahead of provincial elections.

The attacks, barring one, struck in Shi'ite neighbourhoods in and around Baghdad during morning rush hour, with security forces stepping up searches at checkpoints and closing off key roads, worsening the capital's gridlock, an AFP reporter said.

Soldiers and police also established new checkpoints, and unusually, were searching government-marked vehicles that are typically allowed to pass uninspected.

In all, 10 car bombs were set off, including two by suicide attackers, along with one roadside bomb and two gun attacks, officials said.

The attacks struck the neighbourhoods of Husseiniyah, Mashtal, Zafraniyah, Baghdad Jadidah, Kadhimiyah, Sadr City and Shuala, as well as the town of Iskandiriyah, just south of the capital.

Spike in violence

Two people were also gunned down in Saidiyah and Mansur.

No group immediately claimed responsibility for the violence, but Sunni militants often target Shi'ite civilians and government employees in a bid to destabilise the country.

Violence has spiked ahead of the anniversary of the 2003 US-led invasion, with 87 people killed in the past week, according to an AFP tally based on reports from security and medical officials.

Britain-based Iraq Body Count has said that more than 112 000 civilians have been killed since the 2003 invasion, while a study published in The Lancet put the figure at 116 000 from 2003 up to December 2011, when US forces pulled out.

Since the withdrawal, Iraq's military and police are consistently described by Iraqi and American officials as capable of maintaining internal security, but not yet fully able to protect the country's borders, airspace and maritime territory.

Attacks remain common, however, albeit at markedly lower levels than during the peak of Iraq's sectarian war.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
Read more on:    iraq
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Rugby World Cup 2015

All the action from the 2015 RWC, including live coverage of all 48 matches, breaking news, fixtures, results, logs - and much more!


Rugby World Cup 2015

Win over Boks was 'massive' for Japanese rugby
Girls be hating the fat boys
VIDEO: Six of the best dummy passes from the RWC
Boks can brace for Wales - bookies
Traffic Alerts

It is always easier to notice the faults in others rather than face our own. Focusing too much on the perfect and ideal more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.