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REPUBLIC OF IRAQ: Iraq: Indiscriminate Baghdad attacks are a war crime

22 Dec 2009
Region: REPUBLIC OF IRAQ
Topic:
Amnesty International condemns today's indiscriminate bomb attacks in Baghdad which killed at least 120 people, many of them civilians, and injured 400 other people, according to news reports.
It is not known who carried out this morning’s bomb explosions in Baghdad.

"There can be absolutely no justification whatsoever for indiscriminate attacks or attacks which target civilians, as these seem to have done.

Such attacks are war crimes.

They must be investigated thoroughly by the authorities and those responsible must be identified and brought to

justice." said Malcolm Smart, Amnesty International's director for the Middle East and North Africa.

According to news reports at least five bomb explosions shook the city this morning. The first explosion went off in Baghdad's southern al-Doura district and was apparently aimed at a police patrol but killed at least

12 students from a nearby college.

Another four near simultaneous car bombs exploded close to government buildings reported to house the Labour, Health and Interior Ministries.

Amnesty International has repeatedly condemned car bomb and other attacks targeting civilians in Iraq, some of which appear to have been intended to re-ignite sectarian divisions between Iraq's the Sunni and Shi’a

communities and members of various ethnic and religious minorities,

Today's coordinated attacks follow a decision by Iraq's parliament to pass a new electoral law two days ago paving the way for a general election to be held early next year. Passage of the law was previously delayed due to a dispute over its terms.

AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL PRES RELEASE
8 December 2009

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