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Iraq Blasts Kill 26

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Iraqi officials say a series of bomb attacks Friday has killed at least 26 people in Baghdad and in a town south of there.

Back-to-back explosions at a pet market in Baghdad's predominantly Shi'ite neighborhood of Kazimyah killed more than a dozen people while the market was crowded with people doing their weekly shopping.

Another attack took place in the town of Shomali, in Hillah province, south of the capital. Two bombs exploded at nearly the same time in a busy marketplace, killing at least 13 people.



This appears to be the latest incident in a spike of unrest in Iraq.

On Tuesday in Taji, about 20 kilometers north of Baghdad, a suicide bomber set off a car packed with explosives at an army checkpoint, killing at least four people and wounding 12 others. At least two soldiers were among those killed.

On Sunday, a suicide bomber targeting government-backed forces killed at least 22 people.

Analysts say Sunni insurgents may be responsible for the attacks.

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