Iraqi police: 20 killed in Karballa blast

February 3, 2010 14:40


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A bomb planted on a parked motorcycle exploded Wednesday on the outskirts of the holy city of Karbala, killing at least 20 Shi'ite pilgrims and wounding more than 100 others amid tight security for the huge religious procession, officials said.

The blast was the latest in a string of attacks this week that have targeted pilgrims making their way to an important Shi'ite religious observance in Karbala, raising fears of a spike in attacks by suspected Sunni insurgents when the pilgrimage culminates Friday.

The bomb exploded at about 11 a.m. in an area known as Ibrahimia, near the east entrance — one of three — into Karbala, about 50 miles (80 kilometers) south of Baghdad, said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to brief media.

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