Two large explosions rock central Baghdad
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Last Updated: Sunday, September 05, 2010, 15:28
  
Baghdad: A large explosion on Sunday rocked an Iraqi ministry of defence complex that three weeks ago was the site of a suicide bomb attack that killed dozens of would-be army recruits, a news agency correspondents said.

An early interior ministry toll said at least one person had been killed and three wounded by the blast at around 10:50 am (0750 GMT) near the Maidan and Bab al-Muatham districts of the capital.

The large explosion occurred near the headquarters of Rusafa Military Command in eastern Baghdad, sending plumes of smoke into the air. It was preceded by a smaller almost simultaneous explosion in the capital.

The military headquarters was being used as an army recruitment centre on August 17 when a suicide bomber detonated his payload, killing 59 people.

Today's explosion was the biggest to hit Baghdad since the recruitment centre attack and it came four days after US forces officially changed their role in Iraq from a combat mission to "advise and assist" operations.

Vice President Joe Biden launched the new mission when visiting Baghdad last week, opening up a fresh phase in a seven-year deployment that has cost the lives of more than 4,400 US troops.

He said in a speech on Wednesday that violence in Iraq was now at its lowest level since the war, but that same day official statistics said that 426 people were killed in unrest last month, underscoring insurgents' ability to kill.

PTI


First Published: Sunday, September 05, 2010, 15:28


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