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Series of blasts in Iraq

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A series of bombings killed at least 19 people and wounded 60 on Sunday in the western Iraqi city of Ramadi, said police and hospital officials, a worrying sign that violence may be on the rise in this former hotbed of the militancy.

The first explosion occurred in a parking lot in Ramadi, when a parked car exploded near the police headquarters for Anbar province and the provincial council building, said a local police official.

As police and bystanders rushed to the scene, a second car parked in the vicinity blew up, said the police official. According to the official, a third vehicle exploded about an hour later near the gates to the Ramadi hospital.

Multiple explosions timed to kill rescuers and security forces responding to an earlier bomb were a hallmark of Al-Qaeda in Iraq forces during the height of the insurgency.

Anbar province was the scene of some of the most intense fighting by U.S. troops during the militancy.

Violence tapered off significantly after local tribes decided to ally with U.S. forces, but bombings such as those on Sunday are a worrying sign of the militancy’s resilience in the western province.

Aeefan Sadoun, a member of the Anbar provincial council, told The Associated Press that Sunday’s attacks “represent a limited security breach that will be fixed soon”.

He said the attacks did not signify a “big security deterioration in the province,” but were rather a sign that militants are trying to attack “soft areas full of civilians” because they are unable to fight the Iraqi security forces.

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Printable version | Dec 15, 2019 1:50:08 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/Series-of-blasts-in-Iraq/article16886089.ece

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