Deadly bomb attacks rock Iraq markets

At least 31 people killed and dozens wounded in car bombings in Shia-dominated areas.

    At least 31 people have been killed and dozens others wounded by car bombs in mainly Shia Muslim neighbourhoods in Iraq, officials say.

    Police officers said a bomb hidden in a box went off at the Milhaniya pet market on Friday in the Khatamiya area in northern Baghdad. In a second blast, a parked car exploded.

    Glass and shrapnel was scattered across the scene, and several nearby cars were completely destroyed.

    In the predominantly-Shia province of Babil, two car bombs in the town of Shomali, south of Baghdad, killed 13 people and wounded 47 others, according to security and medical officials.

    The first explosion went off on the town's outskirts, while the second was detonated in a market.

    Women and children were among the casualties in both attacks, medics said.

    Markets are crowded on Fridays as Iraqis come to shop and spend family time during the Muslim weekend. The markets are a frequently targeted by armed groups which seek to inflict large numbers of casualties.

    Despite a drop in violence, fighters carry out near-daily attacks on security forces and civilians in Iraq in an attempt to undermine the Shia-led government.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


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