Iraq: 22 killed in string of bomb attacks

Updated 19 January 2013
0

Iraq: 22 killed in string of bomb attacks

BAGHDAD: Insurgents unleashed a string of bomb attacks mainly targeting Shiites across Iraq on Thursday, killing at least 22 people and extending a wave of deadly bloodshed into a second day.
The eruption of violence follows nearly two weeks of relative calm, and threatens to inflame rising tensions among Iraq’s ethnic and sectarian groups.
The worst attack took place near Dujail, 80 km north of Baghdad, where a pair of car bombs exploded near groups who were traveling on foot to a shrine in the town of Samarra.
The head of the Salahuddin provincial health directorate, Raed Ibrahim, said 11 people were killed and more than 60 were wounded in that attack. “We heard thunderous explosions, and everybody went outside and saw burning cars and several bodies on the ground. Market stalls on both sides of the road were on fire,” said Naseer Hadi, who works in the Dujail post office.
A 2006 bombing at the gold-domed shrine that was blamed on Al-Qaeda in Iraq set off years of retaliatory bloodshed between Sunni and Shiite extremists that left thousands of Iraqis dead and pushed the country to the brink of civil war.
The attacks in Dujail came hours after a car bomb struck a bus carrying foreigners near Karbala. Four people were killed and 12 were wounded in that attack, according to police and hospital officials.
The explosion tore through the undercarriage and blew out most of the windows of the white and blue tour bus that got hit. Nusaif Al-Kitabi, deputy chairman of the Karbala provincial council, said the bus was carrying people from Afghanistan.
In the town of Qassim, 125 km south of Baghdad, a parked car bomb exploded near a bus stop, killing five people and wounding 20.


The casualties included Shiites who were heading to Karbala, said police and hospital officials.
In northeastern Baghdad, a roadside bomb apparently meant to hit an army patrol missed its target and struck a civilian car, killing 2 passengers and wounding two others, said police and hospital officials. Like most other officials, they spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to release the information to reporters.
Thursday’s bloodshed comes a day after a wave of attacks killed at least 33 people across Iraq in the country’s deadliest day in more than a month.


Iran threatens to ‘vigorously’ resume enrichment if US quits nuclear deal

Updated 22 April 2018
0

Iran threatens to ‘vigorously’ resume enrichment if US quits nuclear deal

  • US President Donald Trump has set a May 12 deadline for the Europeans to “fix” the 2015 agreement that provides for curbs to Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for relief from financial sanctions
  • Zarif told reporters in New York that Iran is not seeking to acquire a nuclear bomb, but that Tehran’s “probable” response to a US withdrawal would be to restart production of enriched uranium

NEW YORK: Iran is ready to “vigorously” resume nuclear enrichment if the United States ditches the 2015 nuclear deal, and further “drastic measures” are being considered in response to a US exit, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif warned Saturday.
Zarif told reporters in New York that Iran is not seeking to acquire a nuclear bomb, but that Tehran’s “probable” response to a US withdrawal would be to restart production of enriched uranium — a key bomb-making ingredient.
“America never should have feared Iran producing a nuclear bomb, but we will pursue vigorously our nuclear enrichment,” added the foreign minister, who is in the United States to attend a UN meeting on sustaining peace.
US President Donald Trump has set a May 12 deadline for the Europeans to “fix” the 2015 agreement that provides for curbs to Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for relief from financial sanctions.
Zarif’s comments marked a further escalation of rhetoric following a warning earlier this month from Iranian President Hassan Rouhani that Washington would “regret” withdrawing from the nuclear deal, and that Iran would respond within a week if it did.
The fate of the Iran deal will be a key issue during French President Emmanuel Macron’s state visit to Washington beginning Monday, followed by talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Washington on Friday.
Zarif said the European leaders must press Trump to stick to the deal if the United States “intends to maintain any credibility in the international community” and to abide by it, “rather than demand more.”
The foreign minister warned against offering any concessions to Trump.
“To try to appease the president, I think, would be an exercise in futility,” he said.
European leaders are hoping to persuade Trump to save the deal if they, in turn, agree to press Iran to enter into agreement on missile tests and moderating its regional influence in Yemen, Syria and Lebanon.
If the United States buries the deal, Iran is unlikely to stick to the agreement alongside the other signatories — Britain, China, France, Germany and Russia --- said the foreign minister.
“That’s highly unlikely,” he said. “It is important for Iran to receive the benefits of the agreement and there is no way that Iran would do a one-sided implementation of the agreement.”
Zarif, who will attend a UN meeting on sustaining peace this week, warned of “drastic measures” under discussion in Iran.
He declined to be more specific, pointing to “what certain members of our parliament are saying about Iran’s options.”