Bomb kills six, soldiers shoot two children


Baghdad : At least six Iraqis were killed in a bomb attack near a Sunni mosque early Wednesday as a medical source reported that two children were reported to have been shot dead by Iraqi soldiers.

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Witnesses to the bombings said that two explosions went off shortly after each other near the Sunni Zaid bin Hashim mosque in the Jisr Diyala district of the capital.

Some 20 people were injured in the attack, including several policemen, the witnesses said.

In a separate incident, a medical source from the predominantly Shiite city of Karbala, 110 kilometres south of Baghdad, told DPA that Iraqi soldiers shot two girls dead.

One was reported to be seven years old and the other a 10-month-old baby.

According to the source, the hospital received the bodies of the seven-year-old and the 10-month-old Wednesday. Their mother suffered facial bruises after allegedly being beaten up by Iraqi soldiers during an army raid in the Askary district.

In Karbala, witnesses and authorities have been reporting bloody clashes between the police and Mahdi Army, coupled with house-to-house raids.

The so-called Mahdi Army is the paramilitary wing loyal to Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr.

Sadr leaders decried what they termed a clampdown on their ranks, after the head of the Sadr office in Karbala, Abdel-Hadi al-Mohammadawy, was detained for two hours after being taken from his own home at gunpoint.

The police and army raids have been ongoing during the past three days, witnesses told DPA Wednesday.

Only a day earlier, al-Sadr had attempted to stop the violence associated with the raids by calling on his militias as well as the police and army to cease killing citizens in the name of self-defence or “in the name of man-made laws.”