Iraq funeral suicide blast kills 46; Erbil blast kills 6



Iraqis carry in Basra on May 17, 2013, the coffin of a Shi'ite fighter killed in neighbouring Syria fighting alongside President Bashar al-Assad's forces.



Dozens of people were killed in southern Iraq on Sunday after a suicide bomber blew himself up at a Shia funeral.

The explosion at a mosque in Mussayab caved in the ceiling, killing at least 46 people and injuring 50.

The funeral was for a man who had been killed a day earlier by militants, according to Reuters.

Some victims could still be trapped underneath the rubble, police warned.

"Until now, we are trying to retrieve bodies from under the debris. Most of the bodies were torn to pieces. Legs and hands were scattered on ground," said a policeman at the scene, according to the Associated Press.

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Another attack on Sunday saw six killed after an intelligence office was hit six times by suicide bombers in the Kurdish city of Erbil in northern Iraq.

Erbil has mostly been spared the extreme violence to the south and this is the first major attack there in six years.

Forty others were injured in the attack that is being blamed on Islamist militants, though nobody has taken responsibility for the violence.

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Nor has any group taken responsibility for the bombing south of Baghdad, but it fits a pattern of attacks by Sunni militants angry about Shia rule and abuses under the current government.

It is believed that the attacks are an attempt to provoke Shia retialiation — a move that has so far not worked, though there have been worrying signs that it could provoke another civil conflict.

More than 6,000 people have been killed in violence in Iraq since the start of the year, according to figures given by the Iraqi Body Count website.

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