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Iraqi Sunni Lawmaker Killed in Suicide Bombing

  • VOA News

An undated photo at an undisclosed location shows Sunni Iraqi Member of Parliament Ifan Saadun al-Issawi.

An undated photo at an undisclosed location shows Sunni Iraqi Member of Parliament Ifan Saadun al-Issawi.

A suicide bomber has killed an influential Sunni lawmaker and one of his bodyguards in Iraq's western Anbar province, where thousands have been holding daily protests against Shi'ite Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.

Ifan Saadoun al-Essawi died Tuesday when his attacker, posing as a construction worker, approached the lawmaker at a project site and blew himself up in Fallujah, west of Baghdad.

Al-Essawi, a member of the Sunni-backed Iraqiya bloc, was one of the key founders of a group of Sunni tribal militias who joined forces with the U.S. military to fight al-Qaida in 2006.

No one has claimed responsibility for Tuesday's bombing, which comes amid rising anti-government protests, mostly by Sunnis, that have rocked Iraq since December.

Many protesters are calling for Mr. Maliki to step down. They also want the release of detainees they say are being held without trial - and the suspension of an anti-terrorism law they say targets Sunnis unfairly.

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

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