June 24, 2010 / 11:15 AM / 10 years ago

Five killed as suicide bombers target Iraq troops and police

MOSUL, Iraq (Reuters) - Three suicide bombers killed five police and army personnel and wounded nine others in two separate attacks in Iraq’s restive northern city of Mosul on Thursday, security officials said.

The first attack occurred when a suicide bomber blew himself up at a police checkpoint, killing four policemen and wounding four others, in a western part of Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, police said.

Two other suicide bombers attacked the main gate of an Iraqi army base in eastern Mosul, killing one soldier and wounding five, an army source said.

Mosul is on the frontline of a longstanding feud between Iraq’s Arabs and minority Kurds over land, power and oil wealth. The region is also a hub for Sunni Islamist insurgents linked to al Qaeda.

Iraq is on high alert for insurgent attacks after a March 7 national election produced no clear winner and left the country adrift in political uncertainty.

Overall violence has dropped sharply since the height of sectarian carnage in 2006-7. But daily bombings and killings continue, and civilian deaths since the vote have risen slightly, suggesting insurgents are trying to exploit the vacuum as political rivals jostle for power.

Reporting by Jamal al-Badrani; Writing by Rania El Gamal; Editing by Mark Trevelyan

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