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Iraq: UN Secretary-General meets Ayatullah Al-Sistani for the first time in Najaf

Pakistan: Allama Talib Jauhri’s son-in-law shot dead in Karachi

Palestine: 73 Palestinians killed on Wed in Gaza, total death toll at 695

Palestine: 21 Palestinians killed in early dawn strikes in Gaza

Iraq: Wave of terrorist attacks rip through Iraq at start of Ramadan

12th Jul 2013

A string of deadly attacks have claimed dozens of lives across Iraq. The violence came as Iraq began celebrating the holy Muslim month of Ramadan.

Bomb and gun attacks claimed the lives of at least 30 people across Iraq on Thursday. There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

Health and security officials speaking on the condition of anonymity reported numerous car bombings, suicide bombings, and gun attacks beginning overnight on Wednesday and continuing through late Thursday.

The deadliest occurred overnight when militants shot dead at least 11 police officers northwest of Baghdad. The victims had reportedly served as security guards of an oil pipeline near the town of Haditha, which lies about 220 kilometers (140 miles) outside of the capital.

Thursday morning began in Iraq with car bombings in the northern cities of Tuz Khormato and Kirkuk, leaving nearly 40 people wounded.

Later, two explosions – first from a car bomb and then from a suicide bomb – at mourning ceremony in the city of Muqdadiyah killed at least 10 people wounded 22.

Iraqi security forces increasingly came under attack on Thursday afternoon, with roadside bombs killing two police officers in Mosul and Fallujah. In Baghdad, a car bomb left at least one policeman and two civilians and left at least 10 people wounded.

An off-duty soldier was later gunned down by militants in the northwestern city of Mosul.

Further attacks on police stations in Fallujah and Ramadi claimed the lives of nearly 10 police officers, according to the news agency Associated Press.

The news agency AFP reported bombings and gun attacks on security forces in Tikrit and Khaldia.

A surge in violence has claimed the lives of over 2,500 people since April, raising fears that Iraq could once again see death tolls comparable to those during its 2006-7 sectarian war.

kms/rc (AP, AFP)

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Sectarianism in the Middle East and its rise in the UK, Standpoint, Sahar TV. Interview 29 May 2013 and aired on 12 June 2013

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