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Death Toll Rises in Iraq Bombings

  • VOA News

An ambulance arrives at the scene of a bomb attack in Baghdad, March 14, 2013.
A series of coordinated blasts has rocked the heart of the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, killing at least 24 people and wounding dozens.

The explosions Thursday took place in the Allawi district, which houses several government ministries. It is near the heavily fortified Green Zone where several Western embassies are located. There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

The bombings come one week before the 10th anniversary of the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq and a month before Iraq holds its first elections in three years.

Iraq has been plagued by infighting among sectarian factions. Many Sunnis accuse Shi'ite Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki of discriminating against their community. For months, Sunni militants have for been carrying out a series of strikes on Shi'ite targets.