Monday, 16 July 2007

At least 80 killed in Kirkuk bomb attacks



One car bomb went off in a market near an office of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, the party of Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, and the second exploded in a commercial area near shops and a bus garage.

US troops have begun another new offensive south of Baghdad against insurgents today, aiming to cut off another staging ground for attacks on the Iraqi capital. The new sweep is the latest around Baghdad as part of the "surge" of 28,000 new US troops sent to Iraq this year.

For the past month, US and Iraqi forces have been waging offensives in the region south-east of Baghdad and in the city of Baquba, 50 kilometres to the north-east.

At the same time, the US military has been carrying out a security sweep in Baghdad, hoping to bring calm to the capital and boost the government of Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki.

A number of attacks hit Baghdad this morning. In the deadliest, a roadside bomb exploded as an Iraqi army patrol passed in the Boub al-Sham area on the city's north-east outskirts, killing five soldiers and wounding nine others.

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