Iraq: Hit on deputy PM prompts security shake-up

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March 25, 2007 22:31

 
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The suicide assassination attempt on Iraq's deputy prime minister was carried out or set up by a security guard who was a distant relative the official hired as a bodyguard despite a previous arrest as a suspected Sunni insurgent, a senior Iraqi security official and an aide to the victim told The Associated Press on Sunday. The major security breach, at least the third involving a top politician in four months, prompted Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki to order a government-wide security shake up, including plans to hire a foreign company to guard the Green Zone building where parliament meets, the security official said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak with reporters. The latest security breakdown involved a suicide attacker who got within feet of Deputy Prime Minister Salam al-Zubaie during a Friday prayer service in the private mosque attached to his home. He was seriously wounded when the bomber exploded his suicide vest. Nine people were killed.

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