Source Pravda.Ru

Iraq: Sunni extremists vowed to disrupt elections

A suicide driver blew up an ambulance at the wedding of a Shiite couple near Youssifiyah, just south of Baghdad, on Friday, killing seven and injuring 16, including the bride and groom. In another incident, 14 people were killed and 40 others injured when a car bomb exploded outside a Shiite mosque in the capital packed with worshippers celebrating a &to=http:// english.pravda.ru/society/2003/02/10/43219.html ' target=_blank>Muslim holiday.

The car bombing at the al-Taf mosque occurred as worshippers were leaving services marking Eid al-Adha or Feast of Sacrifice, reports the Japan Today.

According to the ABC News, the attacks came a day after Iraq's most feared terror leader, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, denounced Shiites in a recording that appeared aimed at sowing division ahead of the Jan. 30 elections. Shiites, long the oppressed majority in Iraq, are expected to take power in the balloting, which Sunni Muslim extremists have vowed to disrupt.

Also Friday, a U.S. soldier died in an operation north of Baghdad, and an Italian soldier was killed by a burst of gunfire while patrolling in a helicopter near the southern city of Nasiriyah. Insurgents attacked several designated polling places outside Baghdad.

The car bombing at the al-Taf mosque in Baghdad occurred just as worshippers were leaving services marking one of Islam's most important holidays, &to=http:// english.pravda.ru/world/2003/02/11/43244.html ' target=_blank>Eid al-Adha, or Feast of Sacrifice. It was the second car bombing at a Shiite mosque in Baghdad this week.

An official at Yarmouk Hospital said 14 people died and 40 were wounded in the blast, which set several cars on fire and scattered debris across the street. Dozens of weeping men and women frantically searched the hospital for missing loved ones.

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