Dozens killed across Iraq Saturday in sectarian bloodletting


Iraqis walk past damaged buildings and burnt out vehicles following a car bomb that exploded the previous day in the commercial centre of the capital Baghdad on May 28, 2013. Violence in Iraq has killed more than 500 people in May, AFP figures showed, as authorities struggled to contain a wave of unrest that has raised fears of new sectarian conflict.


Sabah Arar

At least 30 people are dead in attacks across Iraq on Saturday.

A suicide bomber blew himself up in a Shia mosque north of Baghdad, killing 12 worshippers during evening prayers. Another 25 people were injured in the attack.

Near the northern city of Mosul, about a dozen people were killed in several attacks. In Mosul itself, a suicide bomb near a police patrol killed four people, including a police officer.

Five policemen were killed in Anbar province after militants detonated two car bombs and fired rocket-propelled grenades.

Another two people were killed in Tikrit after gunmen opened fire on day laborers working there.

In the northern town of Tuz Khurmatu, gunmen opened fire killing three other policemen.

The killings mark another day of brutal violence in Iraq, sparking fears that the country is returning to a sectarian civil war.

Many recent attacks have come from Sunni extremist groups who are attempting to provoke Shia reprisals, further fanning the sectarian flames. Some Sunnis believe that the Shia government has discriminated against them provoking violence and protests.

Attacks in Tuz Khurmatu, however, may speak to another dispute, between Iraq's Kurds and the government.

The area is a zone that stretches from the border with Iran to that with Syia disputed by both Iraqi authorities and Kurds.

Last May was the deadliest month in Iraq since March 2008 with over 1000 people dead in violent attacks.