Back-to-back bombs at Shi'ite shrine in Iraq kill 4

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September 12, 2009 22:23

 
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Two bombs exploded back to back near a Shiite shrine in central Baghdad where worshippers had gathered in prayer Saturday, killing four people and injuring 24, police and hospital officials said. The first bomb went off next to the tomb of a revered ninth century religious figure, Sheik Othman al-Omari. Then a car bomb exploded in a nearby parking lot as crowds were gathering. The blasts damaged the shrine and blew out the windows of neighboring buildings. Attacks blamed on al-Qaida in Iraq and other Sunni extremists are again targeting Shi'ite civilians. Violence between Shiites and Sunnis drove the country to the brink of civil war in 2006 and 2007, though it has ebbed since. Iraqi and US officials say the attacks are aimed at rekindling that violence, but so far Shi'ite groups have reacted with restraint.

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