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Truck and Car Bombs in Baghdad, Kirkuk Kill Scores


Iraqi police say a truck bomb in Baghdad killed more than 100 people and wounded more than 200 others Saturday. VOA's Jim Randle has this update from northern Iraq.

Sirens wailed again in Baghdad, as ambulances rushed hundreds of injured people to hospitals already crowded with wounded. Rescuers pressed pickup trucks into service to carry the wounded.

The truck bomb, disguised as a food truck, hit a market in a mostly Shi'ite neighborhood in Baghdad.

This survivor says a big bomb went off in the market and everyone took cover.

The huge explosion destroyed stalls and stores in the market, crowded with people buying food for their evening meal.

Earlier, a series of car bombs exploded in the northern Iraqi oil city of Kirkuk. At least one bomb went off near the offices of the Kurdish Democratic Party (KDP) of Massoud Barzani, leader of Iraq's autonomous Kurdish region.

A police commander in Kirkuk, Brigadier general Burhan Tayeb, told journalists that 17 people were hurt in the explosions.

Authorities imposed a nighttime curfew on the city.

A curfew was also imposed in Mosul, northwest of Kirkuk, after clashes between insurgents and Iraqi forces.

Still another car bomb went off in a predominately Sunni city, Mahmoudiya, about 30 kilometers south of Baghdad, killing at least one person and wounding many more.

The series of attacks came as Iraq's top Shi'ite cleric, Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, appealed for an end to sectarian conflict and called for Muslim unity.

Iraqi and U.S. authorities plan to move tens of thousand of additional troops into Baghdad to quell the sectarian attacks that killed 94 people a day last year, mostly in Baghdad.

In another development Saturday, coalition forces say they killed four al-Qaida terrorists and detained 29 suspected terrorists. The raids on suspected terrorists took place in Fallujah and other areas of Iraq.

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