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Series of bombings strike Baghdad and other cities as at least 29 killed in Iraq

Series of bombings strike Baghdad and other cities as at least 29 killed in Iraq

Car bombs struck a series of targets in Baghdad and other volatile areas in Iraq on Monday as at least 29 people were killed or found dead nationwide.
The deadliest attack was in western Baghdad, where a car packed with explosives blew up just before 5 p.m. in a residential area in the mixed Sunni-Shiite neighborhood of Baiyaa. Five civilians were killed and 10 wounded, police said.
Another parked car bomb struck a commercial area at about the same time in the eastern Baghdad area of Talibiyah, killing two civilians and wounding eight, police said.
That blast came hours after a suicide car bomber also struck an Iraqi checkpoint as he emerged from an underpass in a predominantly Sunni area elsewhere in western Baghdad on Monday, killing four people and wounding 10, police said.
The blast, which occurred at 10 a.m. at an Interior Ministry checkpoint in Nisour Square in the Harthiyah neighborhood, caused part of the road to buckle and devastated the underpass, killing the two commandos and two civilians.
Mortar attacks targeting a residential area and a coffee shop also killed at least two civilians and wounded 14 in northeastern Baghdad, while a roadside bomb killed one civilian and wounded two others in an earolier attack in Baiyaa, police said.
Police also reported that gunmen killed a retired brigadier from Saddam Hussein's former army as he was driving his own car in southwestern Baghdad.
The attacks occurred despite stringent security measures and extra U.S. and Iraqi forces on the streets as part of a security crackdown now in its 11th week.
In the Sunni insurgent stronghold of Anbar province, a tanker truck exploded near a restaurant just west of Ramadi, killing four people and wounding six, according to police in the provincial capital.
A parked car bomb also struck a police patrol in the Raas al-Jada, a mainly Sunni Arab area in the northern city of Mosul, killing one policeman and wounding two others, police Brig. Gen. Mohammed Idan al-Jubouri said.
The attack occurred at 8 a.m., about four hours after some 50 gunmen attacked a police station in the same area, prompting a firefight and clashes as police chased the gunmen through the narrow streets. Four of the gunmen were killed and two others detained, while one policeman was wounded, police said.
Police also cordoned off the area and blocked five bridges after four mortar rounds landed on the police command headquarters elsewhere in Mosul, causing no damages, said Brig. Saeed Ahmed al-Jubouri, the media director for the provincial police.
The city, 360 kilometers (225 miles) northwest of Baghdad, has seen a rise in recent violence that has been widely blamed on an influx of militants fleeing the U.S.-Iraqi operation in the capital.
Gunmen also killed a member of the main Kurdish political party, the Kurdistan Democratic Party, near Mosul, reflecting rising ethnic tensions in the region.
At least eight bullet-riddled bodies, many bearing signs of torture, also were found in different cities, including the body of another KDP member who had been kidnapped last week in Mosul.