News / Middle East

    Sectarian Attacks Kill 65 in Iraq

    An Iraqi man inspects damaged vehicles in a car bomb attack in Baghdad, Iraq, Dec. 16, 2013.
    An Iraqi man inspects damaged vehicles in a car bomb attack in Baghdad, Iraq, Dec. 16, 2013.
    VOA News
    Iraqi officials say car bombs targeted Shi'ite pilgrims near Baghdad as Iraq-wide violence killed at least 65 people Monday.

    Two parked cars packed with explosives went off late Monday in the southern Baghdad suburb of al-Rasheed, killing at least 23 pilgrims walking to the Shi'ite holy city of Karbala.

    More than 55 people were wounded in the attack.

    Meanwhile, in the northern city of Mosul, militants gunned down 11 Shi'ite pilgrims on a bus travelling to Karbala.

    And in the northern city of Tikrit, three suicide bombers set off explosive belts in a bid to break into the city council building, killing two civilians.

    A group of suicide bombers attacked the city of Beiji, killing at least eight policemen.  Several bombings across Baghdad killed at least 11 others.

    There was no claim of responsibility for the attacks, but insurgent groups, mainly al-Qaida and other Sunni militants, frequently target members of Iraq's Shi'ite majority, whom they consider to be apostates.

    Hundreds of thousands of Shi'ite pilgrims are making their way to Karbala to commemorate Arbaeen, the end of 40 days of mourning following the death anniversary of the Prophet Muhammad's grandson, Imam Hussein, a revered Shi'ite figure.


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

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