Iraq bomb attacks on pilgrims kill 28
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Last Updated: Tuesday, December 06, 2011, 09:58
Hilla: A wave of bomb attacks targeting Shiite pilgrims in Iraq killed 28 people and wounded 78, a day before the peak of the Ashura religious commemorations, security officials and medics said.

It was the bloodiest day in Iraq since October 27, when at least 32 people were killed and 71 wounded in twin blasts in Baghdad.

In yesterday's deadliest attack, a car bomb blasted pilgrims in the Neel area north of Hilla south of Baghdad, in central Iraq, security officials said.

"We received 16 bodies and 45 wounded," Dr Mohammed Ali of Hilla hospital told AFP, and a Hilla police first lieutenant confirmed that toll.

The police officer also said that a car bomb exploded in the centre of Hilla near Shiite pilgrims, killing one person and wounding three.

A medical source in another hospital in Hilla said that it had received one body and 20 wounded.

Baghdad was also hit by bomb attacks against Shiite pilgrims, with at least 10 people killed and 30 wounded.

"Eight people were killed and 18 wounded by a roadside bomb targeting a convoy of pilgrims in the Urr neighbourhood," a police source said.

That toll was confirmed by a medical source at the Imam Ali hospital in Sadr City, who said that "we received eight bodies and 18 wounded from an explosion in the Urr neighbourhood."

A medical source at Al-Kindi hospital said the hospital had "received two bodies and eight wounded from an explosion in Mashtal" in eastern Baghdad.

An interior ministry official said that attack was also aimed at Shiite pilgrims, but gave a toll of three dead and eight wounded.

The official also said that four people were wounded by another roadside bomb targeting pilgrims in Zafraniyah in central Baghdad.

And a roadside bomb against Shiite pilgrims in Latifiyah, 40 kilometres south of Baghdad, killed another person, a police source said.

The interior ministry official also said that two roadside bombs in the Qahira area of northern Baghdad wounded four civilians, while another bomb in the north of the capital wounded two others.

Those attacks did not target Shiite pilgrims.

The Ashura commemoration ceremonies, which peak on Tuesday this year, mark the killing of Imam Hussein, the grandson of the Prophet Mohammed, by armies of the caliph Yazid in 680 AD.

Tradition holds that the revered imam was decapitated and his body mutilated. His death was a formative event in Shiite Islam.


First Published: Tuesday, December 06, 2011, 09:58

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