Iraqi police say bombings in Shiite neighbourhoods kill at least 23 people
Mourners pray over the a coffin draped with an Iraqi flag of an Iraqi policeman, Hani Hashim, during his funeral in the Shiite holy city of Najaf, 100 miles (160 kilometers) south of Baghdad, Iraq, Monday, Feb. 17, 2014. (AP / Jaber al-Helo)
Sinan Salaheddin, The Associated Press
Published Monday, February 17, 2014 1:34PM EST
Last Updated Monday, February 17, 2014 11:18PM EST
BAGHDAD -- A wave of explosions rocked mainly Shiite neighbourhoods in Baghdad shortly after sunset on Monday, killing at least 23 people and wounding dozens, officials said.
The attacks, three carried out by parked explosives-laden cars and one by a separate bomb, hit crowded commercial areas near Shiite mosques.
The deadliest took place in the eastern Ur neighbourhood where a car bombing killed at least 10 people and wounded 23 others, police said.
Another car exploded in the central Karrada area, killing eight people and wounding 25 others, police added. And one civilian was killed and seven were wounded in another explosion in the southwestern Amil neighbourhood.
In the western Sunni neighbourhood of Ghazaliyah, another car bomb ripped through a commercial area, killing four civilians and wounding 11 others, police said.
Two medical officials confirmed the causality figures. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity as they were not authorized to release information.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attacks, but they bear the hallmarks of Sunni extremist militants seeking to undermine confidence in Shiite-led government efforts to maintain security nationwide. An al-Qaida breakaway group, known as the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, has been behind similar attacks in the past.
Iraq is experiencing a resurgence of violence to levels not seen since the worst of the country's sectarian bloodletting began to subside in 2007.
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