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Iraq Says Senior Insurgent Linked to Car Bombings Arrested in Baghdad


Iraqi authorities say police have arrested a senior insurgent linked to 75 percent of all car bombings in Baghdad since the fall of Saddam Hussein.

Prime Minister Iyad Allawi's office says the suspect, Sami Mohammad Sa'id al-Jaaf, known as Abu Omar al-Kurdi, is "the most lethal" lieutenant of terror ringleader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.

A statement Monday links the suspect to 32 attacks and the deaths of hundreds of Iraqi police and civilians in the past two years. Authorities allege one of his bombings targeted the United Nations headquarters in Baghdad, where a top diplomat and 21 others were killed in August of 2003.

The statement - released six days before Iraqi elections that al-Zarqawi has vowed to disrupt - says the suspect was arrested January 15 during a raid in Baghdad.

Meanwhile, a suicide car bomber struck Monday near the office of Prime Minister Iyad Allawi's political party in Baghdad, wounding at least 10 people. Abu Musab al-Zarqawi's group claimed responsibility.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and Reuters.

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