Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

No strategy and a beige suit

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014 (part 2)

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 29 August 2014

Read more

ENCORE!

Alain Choquette: A Hilarious Magician in Paris

Read more

FOCUS

France welcomes Iraqi Christian refugees

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

Emmanuel Macron: A new economy minister with a pro-business agenda

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

More of this year's best Observers stories

Read more

#TECH 24

Changing the world, one video game at a time

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

Socialist Party summer conference kicks off in explosive atmosphere

Read more

  • EU leaders choose Tusk and Mogherini for top jobs, discuss Russia sanctions

    Read more

  • Dozens of UN peacekeepers still held by Syrian jihadists

    Read more

  • Opposition protesters clash with Pakistani police outside PM's house

    Read more

  • Austerity row overshadows French Socialist’s annual rally

    Read more

  • Egypt sentences Brotherhood leader Badie to life

    Read more

  • Ceasfire allows Gaza families to relax on the beach

    Read more

  • S. Africa condemns 'military coup' in Lesotho

    Read more

  • Kerry calls for 'coalition of nations' to battle IS militants

    Read more

  • Ukrainian plane with seven on board crashes in Algeria

    Read more

  • Exclusive: Fabius warns Russia of more sanctions

    Read more

  • IMF backs Lagarde amid French corruption probe

    Read more

  • Ebola drug ‘ZMapp’ heals all monkeys in study

    Read more

  • British killer escapes from French psychiatric hospital

    Read more

  • Police hunt for British boy with brain tumour taken to France

    Read more

  • Ukraine to relaunch NATO membership bid

    Read more

  • Suriname leader’s son pleads guilty to courting Hezbollah

    Read more

  • Mapping Ukraine: Canada and Russia in ‘tweet for tat’ row

    Read more

Middle east

At least 13 killed in Baghdad bombing

Text by NEWS WIRES

Latest update : 2009-06-26

At least 13 people were killed when a bomb exploded in a central Baghdad market. This is the latest attack in a recent series of deadly blasts just days before the US military is scheduled to pull out of Iraqi towns and cities by June 30.

AFP - Iraq's main motorcycle market was hit on Friday by a bombing that killed 13 people and wounded more than 50, just four days before US soldiers pull out of cities, towns and villages nationwide.
   
Defence and interior ministry officials confirmed the toll and said the bomb went off in the capital's Nahdha district around 9 am (0600 GMT), as people gathered at the market on the Muslim day of rest.
   
The blast was the latest in a string of attacks to hit the conflict-torn nation in the run-up to Tuesday's withdrawal of American troops from Iraq's urban areas.
   
"People burned and bodies were thrown everywhere," said Omar Hashem, 34, covered in blood, who was accompanying a friend planning to sell a motorcycle when the explosion happened.
   
"At first we ran away but we returned to help the victims. Blood and body parts covered dozens of motorcycles that were completely destroyed."
   
Bike trader Maytham Abdelamir, 23, crying, said: "There was a huge shockwave. I saw so many people burned; others were thrown in the air. My friend was killed."
   
Officials from two Baghdad hospitals told AFP 54 people had been wounded.
   
On Thursday, Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki had moved to reassure Iraqis that his security forces were able to protect the population after a massive bomb killed dozens the previous day.
   
Wednesday's attack in a market in the Shiite district of Sadr City in northeast Baghdad was one of the deadliest this year, killing at least 62 people and wounding about 150.
   
"We assure you of Iraqi forces' readiness for the mission, despite some security violations, and we assure you that we are now more stable and steady," Maliki said.
   
He appealed to Iraqis to inform the army and police of any potential attacks, to ensure that the country did not return to the sectarian violence that blighted it throughout 2006 and 2007.
   
The flare-up of violence was part of "a plan that aims to awaken sectarianism, create chaos, abort the political process and prevent Iraqi people from standing on their own feet," he said.
   
The White House has insisted that President Barack Obama is not reconsidering his decision to withdraw troops from Iraq's urban areas.
   
White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said the top US commander in Iraq, General Ray Odierno, had told Obama the Tuesday deadline would be honoured.
   
Asked whether Obama had any second thoughts about the pullback, or whether he had approached the Iraqi government about a change in arrangements, Gibbs said "No, no."
   
However, in the face of persistent violence in Mosul, commanders revealed on Thursday that a deal has been reached for US troops to stay on in some areas of Iraq's main northern city in a non-combat role.
   
"The Iraqi government has agreed on the stay of some non-combat troops," said Major General Robert Caslen, the senior US officer in northern Iraq.
   
"They will support Iraqi forces in anything they want, and they will be in five districts only, working with Iraqis."
   
The latest attacks mean that June's death toll from violence will top the 155 Iraqis killed in May.
   
A June 20 truck bombing near the northern oil city of Kirkuk killed 72 people and wounded more than 200, the deadliest attack in 16 months.
   
On June 10, a car bombing in the largely peaceful southern province of Dhi Qar killed 19 people.
 

Date created : 2009-06-26

COMMENT(S)