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article imageDozens killed in Iraq unrest and protests grow against government

By Ken Hanly     Feb 8, 2013 in World
Baghdad - Unrest continues in Iraq as conflict between Sunni and Shiites continues and protests against the government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki grow.
Incidents in different areas of Iraq highlighted the continuing violence in the country. According to Al Arabiya 33 people were killed in all by several car bombs in different locations. More than 100 were reported wounded. At the same time, tens of thousands of Iraqis are rallying across the country demanding that the Shiite Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki step down. Even some important Shiite leaders, such as Muqtada al-Sadr oppose al-Maliki.
These recent attacks mostly targeted marketplaces frequented by Shia. Friday is a busy day at these markets. There were two car bombs detonated just after 9 in the morning in the Kadhimiyah district in North Baghdad at a bird market. These blasts killed 17 people and 45 others were wounded according to both security and medical officials. Security forces tried to bar journalists from interviewing people or taking any videos of the wreckage.
In the province of Babil south of Baghdad, two car bombs were detonated in the town of Shomali killing 14 and wounding 49 others, in a predominantly Shiite town. Antiwar.com lists the dead at 16 and as many as 44 wounded. Finally, at least two people were killed on the outskirts of the Shiite city of Karbala by a car bomb. Sunni militants, some linked to Al Qaeda, have targeted Shiite groups for some time now, attempting to renew sectarian strife. The Sunnis were dominant under Saddam Hussein.
Omar al_Faruq a demonstrator in Ramadi said:"I have been here for 45 days waiting for my dream to become a reality. I dream that Maliki will be tried, the same way as Saddam." The former dictator Saddam Hussein was executed in 2006. In just the last week over 100 people were killed in the continuing violence. Provincial elections are scheduled for this April.
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