x Abu Dhabi, UAE Thursday 20 July 2017

Attackers kill six in northern Iraq

Shootings and a bombing in northern Iraq killed six people yesterday, including a local government official, in the latest outburst of violence roiling the country.

Security forces inspect the scene of a suicide bomb attack at a coffee shop in Kirkuk, 290 kilometres north of Baghdad.
Security forces inspect the scene of a suicide bomb attack at a coffee shop in Kirkuk, 290 kilometres north of Baghdad.

BAGHDAD // Shootings and a bombing in northern Iraq killed six people yesterday, including a local government official, in the latest outburst of violence roiling the country.

Also yesterday, a spokesman for Iraq's prime minister said that outgoing Iranian president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, planned to visit Iraq later this week. It will be the Iranian leader's second visit to Iraq while in office.

Police officials said yesterday's first attack happened early in the day when gunmen killed two soldiers in an assault on their security checkpoint in the city of Mosul.

Hours later, a roadside bomb killed a municipal council member and his son in a town near Mosul. Gunmen in another area just south of Mosul also sprayed a security checkpoint with bullets, killing two policemen.

Iraqi is being hit by its worst waves of violence in years, raising fears the country is heading back towards the widespread sectarian fighting that peaked in 2006 and 2007.

Ali Al Moussawi, the spokesman for the Iraqi prime minister, Nouri Al Maliki, said Mr Ahmadinejad planed to arrive in Iraq on Thursday. He said Mr Ahmadinejad would meet with senior Iraqi officials and visit Shiite holy shrines in Najaf and Karbala during the two-day visit.

Mr Ahmadinejad, who leaves office in August, visited Iraq for the first time in March 2008.