Bomb attacks have hit more than a dozen Iraqi cities today killing 45 people on the ninth anniversary of the US-led invasion of the country reports the Hindustan Times
and BBC News
These attacks come only days before Baghdad is due to host a landmark Arab summit.
Two car bombs killed Shiite pilgrims in Karbala in a crowded shopping area killing 13 and a suicide bomber killed another 13 in the ethnically mixed northern city of Kirkuk.
These bombings appear to be the work of Al-Qaeda, they bear its trademark of mass-murder and simultaneous nationwide terrorist attacks.
As the Associated Press
points out in its report
the goal of the attacks seems to have been to sow widespread worry and fear amongst Iraqis in the run up to this summit. As such deadly attacks may scare away foreign dignitaries, deter foreign businesses from investing in the country and embarrass and weaken the government in Baghdad.
Osama al-Nujifi a Parliament speaker said that security needs to be stepped up for the summit, he stated this attack and similar ones over the past few weeks show the true colours of the insurgents and makes clear their goal is keeping "Iraq under the threat of violence and destruction."
This has been the worst violence seen in the country since last January, when 53 were killed in a suicide bombing near Basra.