Roadside bombs killed two Iraqi children and two US soldiers on Sunday, as the toll from a coordinated guerrilla onslaught on Iraq's holy Shiite city of Karbala rose to 19 dead.
Even as hundreds of weeping and wailing mourners buried victims of the rebel attack -- the biggest since the Dec. 13 capture of Saddam Hussein -- six of those wounded succumbed to their injuries.
In central Baghdad, a bomb planted beside a road killed two Iraqi children and an American soldier and wounded 14 people on Sunday morning, said US Army Sergeant Patrick Compton of the Army's 1st Armored Division. The wounded include five American soldiers, their Iraqi interpreter and eight members of the Iraqi civil defense corps.
"It was a bad one," Compton said. "It's a real densely populated area of town."
Attackers detonated another roadside bomb later Sunday as a US convoy was traveling on a road near Fallujah, west of Baghdad, killing another American soldier and wounding three, the US military said.
The latest deaths bring the number of American combat deaths since the invasion in March to 325.
Also Sunday, officials said they arrested five Iraqi suspects in the Karbala attacks.
"We are holding five men, and we are still investigating them," said Lieutenant Rafal Smilkowski of the Polish regiment that commands a multinational force controlling south-central Iraq.
Bulgaria declared today an official day of mourning for six Bulgarian and two Thai soldiers killed in the attacks, which destroyed the Bulgarians' headquarters in Iraq and appeared designed to undermine the resolve of US allies soldiering in Iraq. Instead, Thailand announced yesterday it will send an additional 30 troops to provide security for the country's noncombat troops. Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra said Thailand would fulfill its one-year commitment to the US, a longtime ally, and would "not run away from a friend."
Overnight, US forces dug up about 580 rockets buried under dirt near Abayachi, a village northwest of Baghdad, said Major Josslyn Aberle, a spokeswoman for the Army's 4th Infantry Division.
The stash of 57mm rockets was unusually large, indicating it might have been intended for sale, she said.
"We ruined some arms dealer's day," Aberle said, adding that the military were tipped off by an Iraqi informant.
An official of the Kurdistan Democratic Party escaped an assassination attempt on Sunday, but three of his bodyguards were killed, police reported. Gunmen wounded Jwamair Atyia Kakawi, the party's deputy director for security, but not seriously, in an attack in the northern city of Irbil, police director Niriman Abdul-Hamid said.
Irbil was hit by a suicide bomber last week who killed four civilians and himself when an explosives-packed car blew up in front of the Kurdish Interior Ministry. Irbil is the seat of government for Iraq's Kurds, who are ethnically distinct from the majority Arabs and, under US-led aerial protection, have ruled a Switzerland-sized area of northern Iraq since the end of the Gulf War more than a decade ago.
Thousands of Iraqis from all over the country gathered Sunday in the southern holy city of Najaf to mark the fifth anniversary of the assassination of Shiite cleric Mohammed Sadiq al-Sadr.
A huge procession was led by a man wielding a sword and followed by young men who flagellated themselves with chains in an attempt to feel the pain of the slain leader, whose killing was blamed on Saddam.
Attackers blew up four liquor stores in the northern city of Kirkuk overnight. Islamic militants have carried out such attacks in the past. Islam forbids consumption of alcohol.
In the Karbala attacks, four suicide car bombs, mortar shells and rocket-propelled grenades blasted two military bases of the US-led coalition force and the governor's office.
Six coalition soldiers, six Iraqi police officers and a civilian died Saturday. Four of the soldiers were Bulgarian and two were Thai. On Sunday, a Bulgarian lieutenant and five Iraqis wounded in the attacks died in the hospital, the Polish news agency PAP reported.
‘OBVIOUS DIFFERENCE’: The Wuhan Institute of Virology has been researching bat coronaviruses to trace the SARS pathogen, which is 80 percent similar to SARS-CoV-2 The Chinese virology institute in the city where COVID-19 first emerged has three live strains of bat coronavirus on-site, but none match the new contagion wreaking havoc around the world, its director has said. Scientists think COVID-19 — which first emerged in Wuhan and has killed more than 340,000 people worldwide — originated in bats and could have been transmitted to people via another mammal. However, the director of the Wuhan Institute of Virology told state broadcaster China Global Television Network that claims made by US President Donald Trump and others that the novel coronavirus could have escaped from the facility were
HUMAN RIGHTS ABUSES? An institute of the Chinese Ministry of Public Security and a company are to be sanctioned over ‘human rights violations and abuses’ The US Department of Commerce on Friday said that it would sanction a Chinese government institute and eight companies over alleged human rights abuses against Uighurs and other minorities in China’s western Xinjiang region. “These nine parties are complicit in human rights violations and abuses committed in China’s campaign of repression, mass arbitrary detention, forced labor and high-technology surveillance against Uighurs, ethnic Kazakhs and other members of Muslim minority groups in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region,” the department said in a statement. The Chinese Ministry of Public Security’s Institute of Forensic Science and Aksu Huafu Textiles Co are to be sanctioned “for
SPACE RACE: The China Aerospace Science and Technology Corp mission aims to land a robotic rover and put a probe into orbit around the planet China is targeting a July launch for its ambitious Mars mission, which includes landing a remote-controlled robot on the surface of the Red Planet, the company in charge of the project has said. Beijing has invested billions of dollars in its space program in an effort to catch up with its rival, the US, and affirm its status as a major world power. The Mars mission is among a number of new space projects China is pursuing, including putting Chinese astronauts on the moon and having a space station by 2022. Beijing had been planning the Mars mission for some time this year,
Former US vice president Joe Biden on Friday said he “should not have been so cavalier” after he told a radio host that African Americans who back US President Donald Trump “ain’t black.” In a call with the US Black Chamber of Commerce that was added to his public schedule, Biden said he would never “take the African American community for granted.” “I shouldn’t have been such a wise guy,” Biden said. “No one should have to vote for any party based on their race or religion or background.” Biden faced criticism after his comments earlier on Friday on The Breakfast Club, a