Baghdad suicide bombers kill 26 in crowded street

Suicide bombers in two cars killed 26 people and wounded 53 in Baghdad.

Baghdad: Suicide bombers in two cars killed
26 people and wounded 53 in the Iraqi capital Baghdad Sunday
when they drove down a crowded street and blew themselves up
simultaneously, security officials said.

The morning bombings, which came hot on the heels of
attacks late yesterday that killed seven people and wounded
20, underlined the dangers of a resurgence of violence amid a
persistent political vacuum more than three months after a
general election.

The bombers struck outside a bank in a major thoroughfare
in the mainly Sunni Arab Mansur district that provides access
to the fortified Green Zone government and embassy compound in
the city centre from western Iraq.

"The report of the bomb disposal team confirmed that the
two attacks that happened in Mansur today were carried out by
suicide bombers who drove the car bombs," the capital`s
operations command said.

"Each car was loaded with 80 kilogrammes of ammonium
nitrate," the command said in a statement.

"They were detonated simultaneously. They targeted the
Iraq Bank for Commerce."

The bank is the conduit for much of the government`s
foreign exchange transactions and its dealings with investors.
"The bank branch was seriously damaged," a security
official told a news agency.

Fire from a Katyusha multiple rocket launcher killed
three people and wounded four in Al-Obeidi, an anarchic Shiite
slum district in the far east of the capital beyond the
sprawling Shiite bastion of Sadr City, an official said.

And in the Zayouna neighbourhood of central Baghdad,
police found the bodies of five women. A security official
said they were believed to have been killed two or three weeks

There has been a spate of attacks by hardline Islamists
against women accused of breaking the mores of their
ultra-strict brand of the Muslim religion.

Government figures showed that 337 people were killed as
a result of violence in May, the fourth time this year that
the overall death toll has been higher than in the
corresponding month of 2009.