The deadliest of Saturday’s incidents came when four suicide bombers stormed a headquarters for police commandos in the city of Beiji, killing six policemen.

A suicide assault on a police headquarters and other insurgent attacks in northern Iraq killed 10 members of the security forces on Saturday, police said.

The attacks are the latest in a months-long surge of violence that has raised fears the country is slipping back toward the widespread sectarian killings of 2004-2008.

Police officials said the deadliest of Saturday’s incidents came when four suicide bombers stormed a headquarters for police commandos in the city of Beiji, killing six policemen and wounding 17 others.

Guards killed one suicide bomber while the three other bombers were able to set off their explosive belts inside the compound, said the police. Beiji, a centre for oil refining, is 250 km north of Baghdad.

In other violence, gunmen shot and killed two prison guards after storming their houses in a village near the city of Mosul early Saturday.

Also in Mosul, two soldiers were killed and four others were wounded when a roadside bomb struck their convoy.

Mosul, 360 km northwest of Baghdad, is a former militant stronghold.

Medics in nearby hospitals confirmed the casualty figures. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to speak to media.

Insurgents frequently target security forces in an attempt to undermine public confidence in the Shias-led government in Baghdad.

More than 4,000 people have been killed between April and August, U.N. figures show. Another 396 have been killed so far in September, according to an Associated Press tally.

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