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Iraq Says 12,000 Civilians Killed By Insurgent Violence

The Iraqi government says insurgent violence has killed 12,000 civilians in the past 18 months.

Iraq's Interior Ministry reported the first official toll on Thursday. Interior Minister Bayan Jabr said the figures show more than 20 people per day died in bombings and other attacks.

Authorities say the vast majority of victims (more than 10,000) appeared to Shi'ite Muslims.

At least 33 people were killed Thursday in a series of bomb explosions across northern Iraq.

Twelve died in the worst attack, in the town of Tuz Khurmatu, at a restaurant where bodyguards of Deputy Prime Minster Rowsch Nouri Shaways were eating.

Suicide attackers also detonated explosives in front of a state-run oil firm in Kirkuk, and near a government convoy in Baquba. And two parked motorcycles rigged with bombs exploded outside a cafe in Mosul, killing five people.

Some information for this report provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.