Gunmen kill nine in Baghdad goldsmith shop heist

Reuters News
Posted: Mar 12, 2012 10:49 AM
Gunmen kill nine in Baghdad goldsmith shop heist

BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Gunmen with rifles and hand grenades blasted their way into a row of Baghdad goldsmiths shops on Monday, killing nine people and wounding 15, and escaping with gold and cash, police said.

Police said the gunmen stormed the al-Aswad gold market in Baghdad's northeastern Ur district. They killed two gold shop owners, two policemen, two soldiers and three passers-by. Hospital sources confirmed the death toll.

"Gunmen in two to three vehicles broke into the gold shops and started firing. Some gunmen were shooting at people standing outside to enable other gunmen to steal gold," a policeman at the scene said by telephone.

At least 15 people, including four policemen, were wounded in the attack.

Iraq is no longer plagued by the mass sectarian killing that took place in 2006-07, but bombings and shootings by insurgents still take place every day, and criminals frequently use military assault weapons to carry out robberies.

In other violence, gunmen attacked the mayor's office in the town of Tarmiya north of Baghdad late on Sunday and killed three policemen. Two policemen were killed in a separate attack on a patrol in the town, police said.

(Reporting by Kareem Raheem; Writing by Ahmed Rasheed; Editing by Louise Ireland)