11/09/2020, 10.34
IRAQ
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Bloody weekend in Baghdad: dead and wounded in jihadist attacks

Last night a position of a paramilitary group on the western outskirts of the capital hit. At least 11 victims and eight injured, Isis suspected. In Basra, a demonstrator was fatally shot. Also in Baghdad, a leader of the 2019 anti-government protests was shot dead.

Baghdad (AsiaNews / Agencies) - A weekend of attacks and violence in Iraq, from the capital to the southern city of Basra, one of the most important oil centers in the country. This morning medical and police sources speak of 11 dead and at least eight wounded, including soldiers, in the attack launched by a group of armed men - not yet identified - against an army post in the western suburbs of Baghdad.

The attack took place late yesterday evening. Groups of assailants aboard four vehicles targeted the Al-Radhwaniya military base with grenades and automatic weapons. According to some unconfirmed sources jihadist militiamen affiliated to the Islamic State (SI, formerly Isis) are behind the attack there. The group is still present and operating in the territory despite the announcement of "victory" declared three years ago by the Iraqi government.

In fact, local experts state that several clandestine cells of the caliphate are still present in the area, and ready to strike. Part of these are located right in the agricultural area west of the capital where the town that was the scene of yesterday's attack stands.

A police source, consulted by the AFP, reports that "five members of the Hachd al-Chaabi militias", the Shiite paramilitary pro-Tehran militias and now integrated into the regular army, "were killed, along with six inhabitants of the area come to help ". The attack, the source continues, began "with grenades launched against an observation tower" by "some elements affiliated with the Islamic State". The doctors confirmed the toll, adding that at least eight injured were hospitalized in Baghdad.

The violence also affected the southern area of ​​the country, where in Basra - an important economic and oil center - on 6 November a young demonstrator was shot dead. The victim was called Omar Fadhel and was shot in the center. The long trail of blood had opened with another targeted murder, which also took place on November 6 in the capital: the victim is a prominent activist, one of the leaders of the anti-government protests of October 2019, shot dead while driving his car in an eastern district of Baghdad.

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