News / Middle East

Dozens Killed in Iraq Violence

  • People inspect the site of a car bomb explosion in Basra, southeast of Baghdad, July 29, 2013.
  • Residents inspect the site of a car bomb attack in Basra, Iraq, July 29, 2013. 
  • People and security forces inspect the site of a car bomb explosion in Basra, Iraq, July 29, 2013. 
  • A man stands at the site of a car bomb attack in the city of Kut, southeast of Baghdad, July 29, 2013. 
  • People and security forces inspect the site of a car bomb explosion in Basra, southeast of Baghdad, July 29, 2013.
  • People clean up after a car bomb attack hit a Shi'ite mosque in Bayaa, Baghdad, July 29, 2013.
  • Iraqis inspect the aftermath of a car bomb attack in the Shi'ite enclave of Sadr City, Baghdad, July, 29, 2013. 
  • Iraqis inspect the aftermath of a car bomb attack, in the Shi'ite enclave of Sadr City, Baghdad, July 29, 2013.
  • People inspect the site of a car bomb explosion in Basra, southeast of Baghdad, July 29, 2013.
  • People and security forces inspect the site of a car bomb explosion in Basra, Iraq,  July 29, 2013. 
Wave of Car Bombs Kills Dozens in Iraq
Edward Yeranian
More than a dozen car bombs exploded in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, and other cities on Monday, killing over 50 people and wounding more than 200 others. The bombers appeared to have targeted mostly Shi'ite areas. This year has been one of the deadliest since the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

Ambulances ferried victims of a bomb blast in Baghdad's mostly Shi'ite district of Sadr City. Witnesses say a blast inside a minivan transporting Shi'ite workers killed more than half a dozen people.

A bystander gave his version of what happened. He said the force of the blast inside the vehicle killed and wounded people in the area and damaged surrounding shops.

Car-bomb blasts also rocked at least six other Baghdad neighborhoods. In addition, bloody explosions struck the towns of Mahmoudiya, Kut, Basra and Samawa.

A witness in Samawa said fire and rescue workers were slow to arrive at the scene of the blast. He said it took the fire department four hours to respond after the car bomb exploded, frightening people and setting fire to his and other cars.

Parliament Speaker Osama Nujeif, a Sunni, condemned the explosions, as did many other Sunni and Shi'ite political leaders. Baghdad's Alsharqiya TV reported that Shi'ite Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki dismissed his military intelligence chief after the blasts.

Security reportedly was strengthened in several Shi'ite regions of the country in the lead-up to a major Shi'ite festival. The deputy head of the Najaf Provincial Council, Louai Yassiri, explained what is being done. He said his council is trying to revamp its security practices, bringing government officials out of their offices and into the street to coordinate efforts and better protect the people.

James Denselow of the London-based Foreign Policy Centre said that security inside Iraq is deteriorating because of both local and regional issues.

"This is a reflection of an endemic state of instability, and a security forces that are unable to protect large targets such as market places and places of worship," said Denselow. "Meanwhile, instability in Syria has given second wind to Sunni extremist groups that operate under a various range of franchises across a poorly demarcated and even less defended border.”

Denselow also points out that political gridlock in Iraq has added to the chaos, since the country has not had an interior minister in more than a year. Iraqi analysts say that attacks on two major prisons last week let loose dozens of al-Qaida militants, further adding to security worries.

You May Like

Video One Year After Thai Coup, No End in Sight for Military Rule

Since carrying out the May 22, 2014 coup, the general has retired from the military but is still firmly in charge More

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Troops Depart

Afghans are grappling with how exodus will affect country's fragile economy More

Video Scientists Say We Need Softer Robots

Today’s robots are mostly hard, rigid machines, with sharp edges and forceful movements, but researchers at Carnegie Mellon University say they should be softer and therefore safer More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs