Friday, August 10, 2007


Car bomb in Kurdish area of Kirkuk

(AP) — A car bomb struck a market in a Kurdish area in the northern city of Kirkuk on Friday, killing at least eight people and wounding dozens, police said. South of Baghdad, the military said a U.S. helicopter was forced down, leaving two soldiers injured. The attack in Kirkuk, a disputed oil-rich city that has seen a recent rise in ethnic tensions, occurred while the capital remained relatively calm under a driving ban aimed at preventing such attacks during a major Shiite pilgrimage.
The blast tore through the stalls as the market was packed with afternoon shoppers buying vegetables and household goods in a predominantly Kurdish area in southern Kirkuk, 180 miles north of Baghdad. Police initially said it was a suicide attack, but police Brig. Gen. Sarhad Qader later said it was a parked car bomb. Qader said at least eight people were killed and 45 were wounded.
Tensions have increased in Kirkuk as Kurds seek to incorporate the oil-rich city into their autonomous zone in northern Iraq — a move opposed by Arabs and Turkomen in the area. The area also has seen an increase in violence by militants believed to have fled the operations in the Baghdad area.

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