Bombs attack targeting both Shi’ite Muslims and Sunnis killed at least 16 people in Iraq on Tuesday in violence that in recent months has raised fears of a return to the full-blown civil conflict that wracked the country in 2006-07.
In the ethnically mixed province of Diyala, a car bomb targeted Shi’ite Muslims in a marketplace in the village of Anbakiya, killing five people in the third such attack over the past two months, police said.
It was not immediately clear who was behind the attack, but Sunni Islamist groups including al Qaeda, which view Shi’ites as non-believers, have been regaining momentum in Iraq, galvanized by civil war in neighboring Syria.
Another car bomb targeted a Shi’ite tribal leader who survived the attack in which three others were killed, and a third blast in Hwaish village, also in Diyala, claimed three more lives.
A roadside bomb killed five people in a coffee shop in a Sunni area of Latifiya, around 40 km from Baghdad, in a volatile area known as the “triangle of death”, where 16 members of one Shi’ite family were slain last week.
According to the United Nations , more than 800 Iraqis were killed in acts of violence in August.