News / Middle East

More Car Bombings Hit Baghdad

Local residents gather at the site of a car bomb explosion in the Hurriyah neighborhood of Baghdad, Feb. 3, 2014.
Local residents gather at the site of a car bomb explosion in the Hurriyah neighborhood of Baghdad, Feb. 3, 2014.
Edward Yeranian
A series of car bombs Monday struck parts of the Iraqi capital, Baghdad. Growing violence in Iraq killed 1,000 people and wounded 1,500 last month.

Ambulances take casualties to hospitals, after a car bomb exploded in the Horriya district, north of Baghdad.  Other bombings were reported in the district of Baladiyat and the suburb of Mahmoudiya. Iraqi satellite channels say more than a dozen people were killed in the blasts.

The bombings coincided with military operations by the Iraqi Army in the restive, mostly Sunni Anbar province. Heavy fighting has been raging between the army and Islamic militants in and around the towns of Fallujah and Ramadi for more than a month.

Witnesses say communications and electricity have been cut to Fallujah, most of which is now controlled by militants from the al Qaida-linked Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant group. An army statement said 57 militants were killed Sunday and Monday in Ramadi.

Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki has threatened to attack Fallujah, and many residents have fled. Those remaining report shortages of food and medicine.

Sunni religious leaders in nearby Kirkuk are urging the Iraqi government not to attack Fallujah and allow local militiamen and police to reassert control.

They are calling for the government to immediately stop shelling residential and civilian areas and to withdraw the Iraqi Army from Anbar Province. They are also also urging Iraqi groups in other parts of the country to bring pressure on the government to solve the conflict peacefully.

  • Local residents gather at the site of a car bomb explosion in the Hurriyah neighborhood of Baghdad, Feb. 3, 2014.
  • Civilians inspect their damaged house after a car bombing in the Hurriyah neighborhood of northern Baghdad, Feb. 3, 2014.
  • Men inspect their home, which was damaged after a car bomb attack in Baghdad, Feb. 3, 2014.
  • People gather at the site of a car bomb attack in Baghdad, Feb. 3, 2014.

Provincial security committee head Falah al Kafaji says Iraqi security forces also attacked ISIL's base of operations in northern Babil Province, looking for the group's leader.

He says Iraqi intelligence indicates Abou Bakr al Baghdadi is in the region.  He says security forces combed the area, killing three terrorists after storming their headquarters.  He says others are being pursued.

Analyst James Denselow of the London-based Foreign Policy Center says car-bombs have become common in Iraq, and what is “clearly an unacceptable situation” in any other country now draws attention only when “body counts are high.”

Denselow says the Sunni-Shi'ite aspect of the conflict has a more regional and political dimension than a theological one.

"The Sunni-Shia dynamic just disguises what essentially is a geo-political power struggle between Iran and Saudi Arabia," he said. "That is (what) we see in places that are split like Lebanon and Iraq ... where this proxy struggle is being fought.  ...I do not think there is a huge amount of theology to this.  I think it is more raw power politics at play.”

Denselow argues Prime Minister Maliki is attaching his political fate to the military operations in Anbar Province, much as he did during an operation to capture the southern port city of Basrah in 2008 from Shi'ite militiamen.  Iraqi parliamentary elections are due to be held in April.

You May Like

Philippines, Muslim Rebels Try to Salvage Peace Pact

Peace process faces major setback after botched military operation to find terrorists results in bloody gunbattle between government forces, Moro Islamic Liberation Front fighters More

Republicans Expect Long, Expensive Presidential Battle

Political strategist says eventual winner will be one who can put together strongest coalition of various conservative groups that make up Republican Party More

Video New Wheelchair Is Easier to Use, Increases Mobility

Engineers have come up with a lever-operated design that makes use of easily accessible bicycle technology More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Godwin from: Nigeria
February 03, 2014 12:17 PM
What is the origin of terrorism? Why is terrorism now semantic with certain regions of the world? What makes terrorism unique to these people who otherwise claim to be peaceful? How far has terrorism solved the problems which they aim to achieve by resorting to it? Now the ultimate question; who is going to make the result of a sincere appraisal of the works of terrorism available to the terrorists and/or their sponsors so that they decide whether through terror they have moved an inch forward toward achieving their objectives?

For all I can think of, the leaders out there in the Middle East - especially Saudi Arabia and Iran - should be held accountable for all terrorist activities going on in the Islamic world. These are the headquarters of the two functions of Islam at daggers drawn, and terror has been happening in their domains, and exported to everywhere else. What have they done to stop it? How bloody-thirsty are they that they have allowed their followers unleash terror all over the world while they pretend that nothing is happening - just because it rarely happens in Riyadh and Tehran? Into what blood bank have they been gathering the blood of all these terrorist activities?

The other day the Ayatollah claimed to be the superior leader. But I know that Riyadh controls a greater percentage of the Islamic world. Why has none of the leaders in Riyadh and Tehran voiced a dislike for terror and call their dogs to other? There are too many questions here without answer, but it is important that someone should point it out that Riyadh and Tehran are the two pivots terrorism worldwide, and if they say it should stop today, it will.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More