Al Qaeda claims responsibility for Iraq bombings

BAGHDAD Fri Aug 30, 2013 3:12am EDT

People gather at the site of a car bomb attack in Baghdad's al-Shaab district August 28, 2013. REUTERS/Saad Shalash

People gather at the site of a car bomb attack in Baghdad's al-Shaab district August 28, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Saad Shalash

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - An al Qaeda affiliate claimed responsibility for a series of bombings in Baghdad and other areas of Iraq in retaliation for the execution of Sunni Muslim prisoners, according to an Internet statement on Friday.

Hundreds of people have been killed in attacks across Iraq in recent weeks in the worst wave of sectarian bloodshed in the country for at least five years. Just last week, car bombs, roadside bombs and shootings have killed at least 100 people.

The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) said in a statement it had acted in response to the prisoner killings, an apparent reference to the execution of 17 people in Iraq this month, most convicted on terrorism charges.

"We will avenge the blood of our brothers," said the statement, posted on a website used by Islamist militants.

An insurgency by Sunni Islamist militants, including the local branch of al Qaeda, against Iraq's Shi'ite-led government, has been gaining momentum 18 months after the last U.S. troops withdrew.

The Islamic State of Iraq has significantly increased its attacks this year. More than 1,000 Iraqis were killed in July, the highest monthly death toll since 2008, according to the United Nations.

More than two years of civil war in neighboring Syria have aggravated deep-rooted sectarian divisions and shaken Iraq's fragile coalition of Shi'ite, Kurdish and Sunni factions.

The renewed violence has sparked fears of a return to the large-scale sectarian slaughter in 2006 and 2007.

(Reporting By Ali Abdelaty; Writing by Maha El Dahan; editing by Sami Aboudi and Elizabeth Piper)

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Comments (4)
kingdad wrote:
I suspect Al Qaeda may also have a hand in the deaths of Hezzbolah Syrians also. They won’t admit it because they’d lose support if they acknowledged their role in the Chemical Attacks there.

Aug 30, 2013 7:21am EDT  --  Report as abuse
GreenAvocado wrote:
Iraqis won’t be united as long as there are two opposing religious parties. People are just dumb for letting a religion control their country and lives. Why can’t they just live together. I’ll never get it.

Aug 30, 2013 9:20am EDT  --  Report as abuse
jns.esq wrote:
What a tragic waste of American blood and treasure these “people” are.

Aug 30, 2013 9:41am EDT  --  Report as abuse
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