110 Bodies Found in Baghdad in 24 Hours

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

BAGHDAD, Oct. 10 -- Iraqi police found 50 bodies dumped across Baghdad on Tuesday, apparent victims of sectarian death squads, and a bombing at a bakery in the capital killed 10 people in the biggest single attack of the day.

The discovery of the bodies, many tortured and all shot, brought to at least 110 the number found in Baghdad in the past two days, an Interior Ministry official said.

A bomb placed under a car outside a bakery in the mostly Sunni Arab southern Baghdad district of Dora reduced the shop to rubble and killed 10 people, many who had been in line outside to buy bread, police said.

At least 25 others were killed in bombings and shootings around Iraq, police and Interior Ministry officials said.

Iraq has been gripped by Sunni-Shiite bloodletting since the bombing of a Shiite Muslim shrine in February. The United Nations estimates that 100 Iraqis die violently every day.

The violence rages on largely unchecked despite U.S. efforts to build up Iraq's fledgling security forces, a major security crackdown in the capital and a series of peace plans by Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's four-month-old government.

Dozens of explosions rocked the capital for several hours on Tuesday night, alarming residents more used to sporadic mortar and rocket attacks, but the U.S. military said the cause was a fire at an ammunition dump at a U.S. base in southern Baghdad.

"The fire ignited tank and artillery ordnance as well as small arms ammunition," the military said in a statement.

A U.S. military spokesman, Lt. Col. Christopher C. Garver, said the cause of the fire, which lit up the night sky, was under investigation.

The Islamic Army in Iraq, one of a number of militant groups, asserted that it had attacked the base with rocket and mortar fire.

There were no immediate reports of casualties. A spokesman for the 4th Infantry Division said the base had been safely evacuated.

Three U.S. Marines were killed in action in Anbar province in western Iraq on Monday, the U.S. military said. Anbar is a center of the Sunni insurgency against Maliki's Shiite-led government and U.S. forces. The deaths brought to at least 37 the number of U.S. troops killed in Iraq since the start of October.

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