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25 killed, 45 wounded in bomb attack in Iraq's Diyala

Updated: 2013-11-21 21:32
( Xinhua)

BAQUBA, Iraq - Twenty five people were killed and up to 45 others wounded in a minibus bomb attack in Iraq's eastern province of Diyala on Thursday, a provincial governor and police said.

"The final toll of the minibus bomb attack in Sa'diyah today is 25 killed and 45 wounded, including 14 in critical condition," Omer al-Hemiyari, the governor of Diyala said in a statement obtained by Xinhua.

"What happened in the Sa'diyah is an atrocious crime and a security breach that led to the deaths of dozens of innocent people," Hemiyari said.

The attack occurred before noon when a booby-trapped minibus went off at a busy marketplace in the city of Sa'diyah, some 120 km northeast of the Iraqi capital of Baghdad, a provincial police source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

The minibus was loaded with more than 100 kg of high explosives and the huge explosion set fire to eight civilian cars and ten shops, the source said.

The ethnically mixed city of Sa'diyah is part of the disputed areas claimed by both the central government in Baghdad and the government of the autonomous region of Kurdistan, which wants to incorporate areas at the edges of its current Kurdish region in northern Iraq into its domain. The Kurds move is fiercely opposed by the Baghdad government.

Diyala province, which stretches from the eastern edges of Baghdad to the border in east of the country, has long been a volatile area since the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003 despite repeated military operations against the militant groups.

Iraq is witnessing its worst eruption of violence in recent years. According to the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq, almost 7, 000 Iraqis were killed and over 16,000 others injured from January to October this year.