Attacks across Iraq kill at least 29 people
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A group of suicide bombers launched a brazen assault on a police station north of Baghdad, killing eight policemen, the deadliest in a string of attacks across Iraq on Monday that killed at least 29 people, official said.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attacks, but insurgent groups, mainly al-Qaeda and other Sunni militants, frequently target civilians in cafes and public areas, as well as members of the Iraqi security forces, in an attempt to undermine confidence in the Shiite-led government and stir up Iraq's already simmering sectarian tensions.
Monday's bombings were the latest episode in a wave of violence that has roiled Iraq since a security crackdown in April on a protest camp in a northern Sunni town.
The bombings started with an attack in the town of Beiji, a former insurgent stronghold 250 kilometres north of Baghdad, where a suicide bomber rammed his explosives-laden car into the main gate of the town police station.
That explosion paved the way for three other suicide bombers, who were on foot, to storm inside and blow themselves up in the building, a police officer said. Eight policemen, including an officer, were killed while five were wounded.
Later in the morning, several bombings hit different parts of Baghdad, killing 21 people and wounding 58, police said.
The deadliest of the attacks in the Iraqi capital was in the southeastern Bayaa neighbourhood, where a parked car bomb ripped through a parking lot, killing six civilians and wounding 12.
Another parked car bomb went off in the central Salhia neighbourhood near the heavily fortified Green Zone where key government offices and foreign embassies are located. That attack killed five civilians and wounded 14.
Four civilians were killed and 11 were wounded when a parked car bomb exploded at an outdoor market in Baghdad's central Sadriyah neighbourhood.