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US Blames Al-Qaida in Iraq for Wedding Party Attack That Killed 31


The U.S. military has blamed al-Qaida in Iraq for a double suicide bombing that killed at least 31 people and wounded about 50 at a wedding party northeast of Baghdad.

The attack happened Thursday in the town of Balad Ruz. The U.S. military says the first suicide bomber was a woman disguised to appear pregnant, while the second bomber blew himself up later as emergency workers arrived on the scene.

Iraqi authorities gave a higher death toll of 35.

U.S. military officials say al-Qaida in Iraq is trying to regroup after suffering a blow last year when Sunni tribesmen turned against it.

In another development, the U.S. military says an unmanned American spy plane crashed in Iraq early Friday morning. It says mechanical failure is thought to be the cause. It is not clear where the MQ-1 Predator drone went down.

The U.S. military uses spy planes in Iraq to search for insurgents targeting American forces.

Earlier Thursday, a car bomb exploded in Baghdad, killing nine Iraqis and a U.S. soldier and wounding more than 20 other people.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.

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