28 killed in Iraq bombings

Saturday 20 July 2013 20.38
At least 28 people have been killed in five car bombings in predominantly Shia districts of the Iraqi capital
At least 28 people have been killed in five car bombings in predominantly Shia districts of the Iraqi capital

At least 28 people have been killed in five car bombings in predominantly Shia districts of the Iraqi capital Baghdad.

The deadliest explosion took place in the northern neighbourhood of Tobchi, where 10 people were killed when a bomb exploded in car parked in a busy commercial street.

Another car bomb exploded in a commercial street in the Karrada neighbourhood, killing at least four people.

It was unclear who was behind the blasts, the latest in a campaign of attacks that has raised fears of a return to full-blown sectarian conflict in a country where Kurds, Shia and Sunni Muslims have yet to find a stable way of sharing power.

Sectarian tensions have been inflamed by the civil war in neighbouring Syria, which has drawn in Shia and Sunni fighters from Iraq and beyond to fight on opposite sides of the conflict.

Sunni insurgents, including the al Qaeda-affiliated Islamic State of Iraq, have been recruiting from Iraq's Sunni minority, which resents Shia domination since the US-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein in 2003.

More than 535 people have been killed in militant attacks in July so far, according to violence monitoring group Iraq Body Count.

That is still well below the peak of sectarian bloodletting in 2006-07, when the number of people killed in militant attacks sometimes exceeded 3,000 in one month.