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9 killed in separate attacks in Baghdad

BAGHDAD — A series of attacks struck Shi’ite neighborhoods in Baghdad early Tuesday, killing nine people and wounding 26, according to Iraqi officials.

The attacks came as Iraqis prepared to celebrate the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha, which begins later this week.

Although violence has ebbed since the heights of the insurgency, Baghdad’s Shi’ite areas remain favorite targets for Sunni extremists who seek to ignite nationwide sectarian conflict.

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The deadliest attack happened when four parked cars packed with explosives detonated simultaneously in the northwestern neighborhood of Shula early on Tuesday, killing seven people and wounding 16, a police officer said.

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The twisted and charred remains of vehicles, including what appeared to be a minibus, could be seen near a damaged house in a residential street after the explosions.

Another police officer said two mortar rounds landed in the capital’s northern Chikok district, killing two people and wounding 10.

Two health officials in nearby hospitals confirmed the casualty figures. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity as they were not authorized to release information.

Although there was no claim of responsibility, coordinated bombings and related attacks are a favorite tactic of Sunni insurgents.

Associated Press