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At Least 35 Killed in Suicide Bombings North of Baghdad


Iraqi officials say at least 35 people were killed and 65 wounded in a double suicide bombing at a wedding party northeast of Baghdad.

The attacks occurred Thursday in a crowded street in the town of Balad Ruz. The U.S. military said the first suicide bomber was a woman disguised to appear pregnant. A second suicide bomber detonated his bomb just minutes after the first explosion, as emergency response units arrived on the scene.

There has been no claim of responsibility. But officials say the attack resembles other suicide bombings carried out by al-Qaida in Iraq.

Earlier Thursday, a car bomb exploded in Baghdad killing at least nine people, including one U.S. soldier, and wounding at least 23.

Violence has risen in Baghdad since late March, when Iraqi and U.S. forces increased operations against Shi'ite militants in Baghdad's Sadr City. The district is a stronghold of radical cleric Moqtada al-Sadr.

The U.S. military says Iraqi and U.S. special operations forces captured a militia leader suspected of involvement in the 2007 deaths of five U.S. soldiers. The U.S. says Iraqi soldiers killed two insurgents while carrying out the arrest of the militia leader, whose name has not yet been released.

Separately, the U.S. military says Iraqi and coalition forces arrested 32 suspected terrorists in Mosul on Thursday.

The U.S. military in Iraq says April was its deadliest month since last September, with 51 troops killed, more than half of them in Baghdad.

In other news, the top foreign policy advisor to Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Recep Erdogan met the leader of Iraq's Kurdistan autonomous region.

The talks involving Turkish envoy Ahmet Davutoglu and regional Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani marked the first meeting between Turkey and the Kurdish regional government of northern Iraq.

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