16 killed in Iraq attacks
A total of 16 people were killed and 16 others were wounded in separate attacks across Iraq Saturday, police and medical sources said.
Gunmen intercepted a car travelling on a main road near the city of Baiji, some 200 km north of Iraq's capital Baghdad, killing four soldiers before fleeing the scene, Xinhua reported citing a local police source.
In a separate incident, gunmen attacked a checkpoint manned by members of a government-backed Sahwa paramilitary group in Tarmiyah area, some 30 km north of Baghdad, leaving three group members dead and five others wounded, including three passersby, a local police source said.
In Anbar province, an army force clashed with gunmen who tried to attack an army base, just east of the city of Fallujah, some 50 km west of Baghdad. They killed seven militants said to be affiliated to the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant, a provincial police source said.
Also in the province, two civilians were killed and eight others wounded by mortar fire in several neighbourhoods in the militant-held city of Fallujah, a medical source from the city hospital said.
Anbar province has been the scene of fierce clashes that flared up after Iraqi police dismantled an anti-government protest site outside Ramadi in late December last year.
Iraq is currently witnessing some of its worst violence in recent years. According to the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq, a total of 8,868 Iraqis, including 7,818 civilians and civilian police personnel, were killed in 2013, the highest annual death toll in years.
(Posted on 03-05-2014)