Tuesday, June 19, 2007

At least 78 dead, 218 wounded in truckbomb attack on Shiite mosque in Baghdad

Above: The Khulani mosque before the attack, and (below) the damage following the bombing, which caused the outer wall and a building just inside it to crumble.

BAGHDAD - A truck bomb struck a Shiite mosque Tuesday in central Baghdad, killing 78 people and wounding more than 200, even as about 10,000 U.S. soldiers northeast of the capital used heavily armored Stryker and Bradley fighting vehicles to battle their way into an al-Qaida sanctuary.

The thunderous explosion at the Khulani mosque in the capital's busy commercial area of Sinak sent smoke billowing over concrete buildings, nearly a week after a bombing brought down the twin minarets of a revered Shiite shrine in the northern city of Samarra and two days after officials lifted a curfew aimed at preventing retaliatory violence from that attack...

Police and hospital officials, speaking on condition of anonymity because they feared retribution, said at least 78 people were killed and 218 were wounded, adding that the toll could rise as bodies were pulled from the debris.

One officer said the explosives-packed truck was loaded with fans and air coolers to avoid arousing the suspicions of security forces guarding the surrounding area, which is full of shops selling electrical appliances.

Read the rest at Yahoo News

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