Iraq Invasion Anniversary Carnage: 98 Killed, over 240 Wounded

by , March 19, 2013

A series of bombings and other attacks, apparently timed to coincide with the 10th anniversary of U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, rocked the country today. The violence focused on government buildings and gathering places in Shi’ite neighborhoods. The toll could have been far worse, however, as security forces claimed to have arrested dozens of militants and confiscated numerous bombs. Overall, at least 98 people were killed. Over 240 were also wounded, but not all those are listed below.

Meanwhile, Moqtada al-Sadr suspended his bloc’s participation in parliament over Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki challenging some of the assembly’s decisions in the courts. Also, next month’s provincial elections were postponed for six months in Anbar and Ninevah provinces.

In Baghdad, the attacks began with an 8:00 a.m. blast at a Mashtal neighborhood restaurant. That bombing claimed four lives, and at least eight people were also wounded. Four day laborers were killed and 12 more were wounded in a bombing in New Baghdad just minutes after the Mashtal blast. Around 10:00 a.m., a bombing at the Ministry of Labor building in Qahira left seven dead and 21 wounded. Then, a bomb left near a restaurant adjacent to Green Zone entrance exploded, killing six people and wounding 15 more. A car bomb in Zaafaraniya killed one person and wounded eight more; second car bomb killed two people and wounded ten more. Ten people were wounded in a blast in Kadhimiya. Four people were killed and 18 more were wounded in a blast in Shurta al-Rabeaa. A blast in Utifiya left one dead and seven wounded. In Mansour, a sticky bomb killed an official at the Ministry of Finance. A civilian was shot and killed in Saidiya. Gunmen killed a store owner in Ghazaliya. In Seha, eight people were wounded in a blast. At least 17 more people were killed in the Husseiniya, Kadhimiya, and Shula neighborhoods. The explosives arrived in Shula hidden inside a truck carrying pea pods; nine people were also wounded there. A bomb in Atiba left an unknown number of casualties.

The surge in violence also affected cities adjacent to or near the capital:

In Sadr City, five people were killed in a blast targeting police; at least 12 more were wounded in Mudhaffer Square A sticky bomb killed three people on a minibus. Two more were killed in a roadside blast. A car bomb killed one person and wounded 10 more on al-Falah Street.A sticky bomb killed a civilian.

In Iskandariya, a car bomb killed five people at a bus stop. Three people were killed and three more were wounded in a blast at a checkpoint near town. At lease five more were wounded.

A car bomb in Mahmoudiya left five dead and 10 wounded.

Two people were killed and eight more were wounded during mortar fire in Haswa.

In Mussayab, two people were killed and 10 more were wounded in a bombing.

A mortar strike at a clinic in Taji left two dead

A soldier was killed in a bombing in Tarmiya.

An explosion targeting a police patrol in Baquba struck a civilian car instead and killed a passenger

Further out from Baghdad, there was no let up in attacks:

In Mosul, a suicide bomber assassinated a local police chief; two bodyguards were also killed and seven others were wounded. A tribal elder was gunned down in Noor. A bomb killed three civilians and wounded five others, including policemen.

One soldier was killed during a mortar attack in Haditha.

A roadside bomb killed a policeman in Tikrit. Another outside the city killed one policeman and wounded two more.

In Tuz Khormato, gunmen killed a shopkeeper, and then blew up his grocery store; one more person was killed and four others were wounded in the attack.

Two police officers were wounded in blasts around the Kirkuk area.

A sticky bomb in Sinjar killed one policeman and wounded two more.

A roadside bomb in Ramadi wounded one policeman. A Katyusha rocket fell near an official’s home but no casualties were reported.

A car bomb in Baiji killed one policeman and wounded 11 more, including students.

An intelligence agent was assassinated in Tel Kief.

Read more by Margaret Griffis