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Iraqi Authorities Impose Vehicle Ban After Car Bombing

Iraqi authorities have banned the use of some vehicles and carts after a bomb blast in a Shi'ite district of Baghdad killed at least seven people and wounded 30 others.

An Iraqi military spokesman, Brigadier-General Qassim al-Moussawi, announced on Saturday an indefinite ban on motorcycles, bicycles, handcarts and animal carts in Baghdad and its outskirts.

The measure was taken to prevent attacks on Shi'ite pilgrims as they travel in the coming days to the southern holy city of Karbala to mark the birth of revered ninth-century Imam al-Mahdi.

Saturday's car bombing happened outside a Shi'ite shrine in Baghdad's Kadhimiya district, even as security was stepped up in the capital in an effort to protect pilgrims leaving for the religious festival.

In other news, the U.S. military in Iraq said Saturday coalition forces had killed three terrorists and detained 17 suspects during operations targeting al-Qaida in Iraq in the Tigris River Valley north of Baghdad.

Separately, the commander of U.S. forces south of Baghdad says he is troubled by the level of support insurgents are receiving from Iran's Revolutionary Guard.

The commander, Army Major General Rick Lynch, says an estimated 50 Iranian and Iraqi operatives working for Iran are active in his region.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and Reuters.

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