13 car bombs in Iraq as Sunnis open political bid

Militants blew up 13 cars in three hours, wounding at least 20 people, while 13 Iraqis were killed in other violence that fed the turmoil following last month's contested parliamentary elections. Sunni Arabs made their opening bid Sunday in what could be protracted negotiations to form a new government. Leaders of the minority's main political group, the Iraqi Accordance Front, traveled to the northern city of Irbil for a Monday meeting with the president of the Kurdish region. Sudan, meanwhile, said six kidnapped embassy employees were freed Saturday, a day after Sudan announced it would close its Baghdad mission as demanded by al-Qaida in Iraq. A Cypriot kidnapped four months ago also was freed after his family paid a $200,000 (€169,534) ransom, a relative said. A third hostage, a Lebanese engineer kidnapped four days ago, was also released, Lebanon's official National News Agency reported Sunday. The Kurdish region in Iraq's north already has seen a flurry of postelection bargaining between Kurds and the governing Shiite Muslim religious party, the United Iraqi Alliance.