– 36 SHIAA PILGRIMS KILLED BY SUNNI BOMBERS
Iraqi police say 36 people have been killed in bomb attacks targeting Shiaa Muslims, on Friday 08/07/2009. In one attack, 30 people died near the northern city of Mosul when a car bomb exploded outside a Mosque during a funeral service.
In Baghdad three bombs killed six people returning from a pilgrimage. The attacks come as Shia Muslims across the country are marking one of their biggest religious holidays and the opportunity of Sunni militants to attack the pilgrims.
Iraq has seen frequent sectarian strife between its Shiaa and Sunni Muslims.
The Mosque attack near Mosul – which is about 400km (250 miles) North-West of Baghdad – took place in a village named by Reuters news agency as Shreikhan. It killed 30 people were killed and at least 61 were wounded in the blast. News agencies report that most people in the village are from Iraq’s ethnic Turkmen community and Shiaa by religion.
Mosul is described by USA and Iraqi officials as Al Qaeda in Iraq’s last major urban stronghold in Iraq (see also – Mosul 05.02.09).
In Baghdad, six Shia pilgrims were killed in roadside bomb explosions. They were returning from Karbala, a holy city south of Baghdad. They had been among hundreds of thousands of Shiaa pilgrims who gather in Karbala to mark the birth of Mohammed al-Mehdi – the 12th and last Shiaa Imam, known as the Hidden Imam.
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