BAGHDAD (AP) — A series of bombings and attacks across Iraq killed at least 29 people Wednesday, authorities said, as politicians prepared to start negotiations to form a new government following parliamentary elections.
The deadliest attack happened when a suicide bomber rammed his explosives-laden car into a police checkpoint in Baghdad's northern district of Kazimiyah, killing five police officers and four civilians, a police officer said. He added that the attack wounded 35.
In the northern town of Tuz Khormato, a series of bomb blasts in residential areas killed at least four civilians and wounded seven, Mayor Shalal Abdol said. Tuz Khormato is about 200 kilometers (130 miles) north of Baghdad.
A bomb in Baghdad's western suburb of Abu Ghraib killed two civilians and wounded three, a police officer said. Police said other attacks killed a civilian and wounded three in the northeastern suburb of Husseiniyah, while gunmen shot dead a lawyer as he drove through the eastern New Baghdad neighborhood.
In Baghdad's western neighborhood of Jihad, a parked car bomb ripped through a commercial street, killing five civilians and wounding 12, police said.
Another parked car bomb went off in a commercial area in the capital's eastern neighborhood of al-Ameen, killing four civilians and wounding 14, authorities said.
A bomb in a parking lot in Baghdad's Sadr City killed three civilians and wounded 12, police said.
Medical officials confirmed the casualty figures. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to release the information.
On Tuesday, a wave of attacks killed 21 people. The deadliest was a suicide bombing at a Shiite mosque, which killed at least 17 worshippers.
Violence in Iraq is at the highest level since the country was pushed to the brink of a sectarian civil war in 2006 and 2007, with the spike in attacks driven by Sunni discontent with the Shiite-led government and spillover from the war in neighboring Syria. Last year violence killed 8,868 people, according to the United Nations.
The attacks also come more than three weeks after Iraqis cast ballots in the country's first parliamentary election since the U.S. military withdrawal in 2011. Shiite Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's bloc emerged as the biggest winner, securing 92 seats in the 328-member parliament, but it failed to gain the majority needed to govern alone. Politicians are now preparing to negotiate to form a new government.