Bomb near Baghdad liquor store kills 7 people

AP News
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Posted: Oct 17, 2011 4:17 PM
Bomb near Baghdad liquor store kills 7 people

A bomb blast near a Baghdad liquor store Monday evening killed seven people and injured another 18, Iraqi medical and police officials said.

Three of the dead and five of the injured were police officers, the officials said.

The information came from police in eastern Baghdad and the hospital where the dead and injured were taken.

It was not immediately clear whether the liquor store was the target or the police officers. Police and Iraqi security officials are often targeted by Sunni militants trying to undermine the country's fragile security. Conservative Shiite militant groups have sometimes targeted liquor stores and cafes.

Later in an eastern Baghdad neighborhood, a roadside bomb exploded near a police patrol, killing one civilian and wounding another four people, said hospital and police officials.

All the officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to reporters.

Security has improved dramatically in Iraq since the black days of the 2006 and 2007, when death squads roamed the streets and as many as 100 bodies a day would turn up at the morgues. But attacks such as Monday evening's still happen regularly.

With all U.S. troops leaving Iraq by the end of this year, Iraqi security forces will be responsible for maintaining security in the country on their own. They face serious challenges, including a continuing insurgency, little ability to protect their own airspace and lingering sectarian tensions.