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22 people killed in spate of bombings in Iraq


18:32, May 20, 2013

BAGHDAD, May 20 (Xinhua) -- The death toll in a series of car bomb attacks in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad and in the southern city of Basra on Monday rose to 22, with at least 137 people wounded, the police said.

One of the attacks occurred in the oil-hub city of Basra, some 550 km south of Baghdad, when two car bombs went off almost simultaneously in the western part of the city, leaving at least 11 people killed and some 35 wounded, a local police source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

In Baghdad, seven car bombs ripped through different parts of the capital city, leaving at least 11 people dead and at least 102 people wounded, an Interior Ministry source anonymously told Xinhua.

The toll of the attacks could rise as ambulances and civilian cars were evacuating the victims to different hospitals and medical centers.

No group has so far claimed responsibility for the deadly attacks, but the al-Qaida front in Iraq, in most cases, were responsible for such massive attacks in the country, raising fears that the terrorist group and other militia could return to widespread violence.

Violence and sporadic high-profile bomb attacks are still common in the Iraqi cities despite the dramatic decrease in violence since its peak in 2006 and 2007, when the country was engulfed in sectarian killings.

The sectarian tension between the Sunni and Shiite communities has been at its highest level since the U.S. troops pulled out from the country at the end of 2011, as the Sunni protests against the Shiite-led government have continued in the Sunni provinces and the Sunni districts in Baghdad.

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