Image taken on July 23, 2013 shows a policeman standing at a checkpoint in Baghdad, Iraq
Image taken on July 23, 2013 shows a policeman standing at a checkpoint in Baghdad, Iraq © Ahmad al-Rubaye - AFP/File
Image taken on July 23, 2013 shows a policeman standing at a checkpoint in Baghdad, Iraq
AFP
Last updated: October 9, 2013

Iraq bombing kills eight

Attacks killed nine people in Iraq on Wednesday, while two bombs exploded near a convoy of parliament speaker Osama al-Nujaifi's guards, wounding at least five, officials said.

South of Baghdad, a roadside bomb detonated near a truck carrying workers, killing eight people and wounding seven, while gunmen shot dead a policeman near the northern city of Kirkuk.

And a car bomb followed by a roadside bomb exploded near Nujaifi's convoy south of the northern city of Mosul, his office told AFP, adding that the parliament speaker was not travelling with it, as he was on a trip to Jordan.

Nujaifi issued a statement condemning the attack and criticising security forces for their "inability to protect citizens... and confront the forces of terrorism."

Nineveh province, of which Mosul is the capital, is one of the most dangerous areas of Iraq, with militants carrying out nearly daily attacks, including against senior security forces officers and officials.

Earlier this year, a roadside bomb exploded near the convoy of Nineveh Governor Atheel al-Nujaifi, Osama's brother, but no one was hurt.

Violence in Iraq has reached a level not seen since 2008, when the country was just emerging from a brutal sectarian conflict.

This year's surge has raised fears of a relapse into the kind of intense Sunni-Shiite bloodshed that peaked in 2006-2007 and killed tens of thousands of people.

Diplomats and analysts say the Shiite-led government's failure to address the grievances of the Sunni Arab minority -- which complains of political exclusion and abuses by security forces -- has driven the rise in unrest.

With the latest violence, more than 230 people have been killed so far this month, and more than 4,900 since the beginning of the year, according to AFP figures based on security and medical sources.

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