BAGHDAD, Feb. 17 (Xinhua) -- Up to 21 people were killed and some 125 wounded in a series of bomb attacks in the eastern part of the Iraqi capital of Baghdad, while a gunfire attack kills four people in the northern city of Mosul on Sunday.
In Baghdad, a spate of car bombs and roadside bombs struck crowded marketplaces and parking lots at the mainly Shiite districts with the aim of causing heavy casualties among residents.
The attacks occurred around 11:00 a.m. (0800 GMT), when three car bombs went off in Sadr City district , two car bombs hit al- Husseiniyah district, and one in al-Ameen, Kamaliyah and Saidiyah districts each.
Two more roadside bombs ripped through Palestine Street and the district of Karrada in central the capital.
The attacks killed a total of 21 people and wounded 125 others, according to the latest reports by the Interior Ministry.
In northern Iraq, the police said that an officer in the provincial intelligence department was killed in the morning by three gunmen in front of his house in the city of Mosul, the capital of Iraq's northern province of Nineveh.
An Iraqi army patrol close to the scene, chased the attackers and killed them after a fierce clash, the source said.
Nineveh province has long been a stronghold for insurgent groups, including al-Qaida militants. Its capital city of Mosul, some 400 km north of the Iraqi capital city of Baghdad, is one of the country's most restive cities.
No one has so far claimed responsibility for the attacks, but al-Qaida front in Iraq frequently claimed the responsibility of most deadly attacks in the country, raising fears that the terrorist group could return to widespread violence.
Sunday attacks came amid weeks of unrest and protests in the Sunni Arab provinces over complaints of being marginalized as well as claims that the Shiite-dominated security forces were indiscriminately arresting their sons and torturing them.
Tension remains high in the country despite that Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki sought to defuse the crisis with Sunnis, as he offered release of hundreds of Sunni detainees and halted arrests made based on information from secret informers. He also lifted ban from some of Saddam Hussein's Baath party members and raised salaries for Sunni anti-Qaida militia.
MOSUL, Iraq, Feb. 17 (Xinhua) -- An intelligence officer and three gunmen were killed Sunday in Mosul, the capital city of Iraq 's northern province Nineveh, a provincial police source said.
The incident took place in the morning when three gunmen shot dead Captain Mohammed Rakan, an officer in the provincial intelligence department, in front of his house, the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity. Full story