Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Suicide bombers hit mosque, kills 34

19 June 2013, 08:11

Baghdad - Two suicide bombers targeted a Shiite mosque in Baghdad on Tuesday, one blowing himself up at a nearby checkpoint while the other slipped inside during prayers. The blasts killed 34 people, Iraqi officials said.

The coordinated bombings were the latest in a string of attacks to hit Iraq, reviving fears the country is headed back toward the widespread sectarian bloodshed that pushed it to the brink of civil war in 2006 and 2007.

Two police officers said the first bomber detonated his explosives at a security checkpoint near the mosque in Baghdad's northern Qahira neighbourhood in an apparent attempt to distract the authorities. The area is a middle-class, Shiite-majority neighbourhood.

Amid the commotion, a second bomber slipped past concrete blast walls and into the mosque, where he blew himself up while worshippers were performing midday prayers, according to police officials.

The bombings also wounded 57 people, the officials said.

Most of the casualties were students from the nearby Imam al-Sadiq University for Islamic Studies. Police officials said the university's Shiite students usually perform their midday prayers in the mosque that was hit.

After the blasts, security forces quickly sealed off the area around the simple, unadorned mosque.

Ali Faleh, a university student, said he was inside a stationery shop nearby when he heard a thunderous explosion.

"Everybody ran to the blast site, and I saw the body of a colleague who used to be in my class," he said. "The aim of today's attack was only to hurt the Shiites who were there to study or pray, not to fight or kill anybody else."

A medic in a nearby hospital confirmed the casualties. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorised to speak to media.

Violence has surged in Iraq in recent months, along with sectarian and political tensions.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility, but suicide bombings and attacks against Shiite worshippers are frequently the work of al-Qaeda's Iraq arm. Sunni extremists such as al-Qaeda consider Shiites to be heretics and want to undermine Iraq's Shiite-led government.

Tuesday's bombings follow a string of attacks on Sunni mosques that killed more than 100 worshippers between mid-April and May.

The bloodshed roiling Iraq has risen to levels not seen since 2008. Nearly 2 000 have been killed since the start of April, including more than 220 this month.

On Sunday, a wave of apparently coordinated bombings and a shooting killed at least 51 people. Fifteen people were killed in bomb attacks on Monday, including one caused by a suicide bomber who set off his explosives-laden belt among a group of policemen in Fallujah, west of Baghdad.

- AP


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...