Updated at 6:44 p.m. EDT, Aug. 13, 2009
Almost two years after a massive attack in Sinjar, another suicide bombing left over three-dozen new casualties today. At least 30 Iraqis were killed and 56 more were wounded in that and other attacks. Meanwhile, Iraqi authorities announced the start of a trial for five Iraqi presidential guards accused of bank robbery.
Five Iraqi presidential guards will go on trial this month for their suspected involvement in a deadly bank robbery. The group worked security detail for high-ranking members of the Iraqi government, including one of the vice presidents. Three more guards remain at large. Opponents of Iraqi Vice President Adel Abdul-Mahdi have questioned his role in the robbery thanks to his bodyguard’s involvement and the recovery of some of the money at a newspaper he owns. In the past, militant groups have used bank robbers to fund their operations, but authorities have discounted that theory in this instance. Four men were arrested in a foiled bank robbery this morning in Baghdad.
Two suicide bombers killed 21 people and wounded up to 35 more in an attack on a crowded café in Sinjar. The town, which is west of Mosul, is home to the Yazidi sect. Tomorrow is the two-year anniversary of the single worst coordinated attack in post-invasion Iraq. Over 500 Iraqis, mostly Yazidis, were killed in that attack. Well over 1,000 were injured as well. In recent weeks, several smaller scale attacks targeting Ninewa province’s diverse ethnic groups have taken place. Because of their unusual religious beliefs, the Yazidis remain a favorite of groups wishing to foment sectarian tensions.
In Baghdad, two people were killed and 13 more were wounded when a bicycle bomb exploded in Abu Dsheer. At a café in Doura, a bomb killed one Iraqi and wouded five others. Also an Iraqi soldier shot at two journalists, but there was no mention of injuries; the Iraqi Journalists Rights Defense Association (IJRDA) is demanding an investigation.
A roadside bomb targeting a patrol in Tal Abta produced no casualties; however, a search conducted afterwards revealed three bombs set to explode on a bridge.
A bomb in Mahmoudiya wounded three people.
A body was found in Tal Afar.
A suicide bomber only managed to kill himself at a gathering of Sufi Muslims south of Baquba in al-Jahiza.
An I.E.D. was defused in Fallujah.
Seventeen suspects were captured in Basra.
Three suspects were arrested in Zubair.
Two al-Qaeda suspects were arrested in Makhmour.
Two Naqshabandiya Army members were captureed in Kirkuk.
Diyala police detained the son of a tribal chieftain in Wajihiya. No reasons were given for the arrest.
Two U.S. military posts were handed over to Iraqi authorities in Diyala.