Two car bombs targeting pilgrims in Baghdad killed at least 32 people, and another 70 were injured on Saturday.
An interior ministry official told AFP news that the first attack was carried out on a highway when Shiite pilgrims were returning from the annual commemoration ceremony of Imam Musa Kazim at about 12:15 p.m. local time (0915 GMT). The second car bomb exploded at the Aden intersection near Kadhimiyah area at about 2 p.m. (1100 GMT).
It was the third day of bombings to strike Shiite pilgrims this week. On Wednesday, a spate of blasts in Iraq killed 72 Shiite pilgrims and injured more than 250 others. The attacks proved the bloodiest in Iraq over the last 10 months.
Iraq has been facing for six months a severe political crisis between Maliki and Kurdish and several Sunni leaders who criticize his "authoritarianism." The tone has hardened in recent weeks and the radical Shiite cleric Moqtada Sadr and the secular Iraqiya bloc have called on Maliki to resign in recent days.
Meanwhile, Al Qaida’s Iraq affiliate, Islamic State of Iraq, has claimed responsibility for Wednesday’s attacks in Baghdad and other cities , according to U.S.-based SITE Intelligence Group, which follows jihadist websites, Reuters news reported.
According to security source at the Ministry of Interior, the rivalries between the various security services and the contradictory orders they receive hinder the fight against terrorism. While the level of violence has fallen sharply in Iraq from where it stood from 2006 to 2007, insurgent groups, mainly al-Qaida, remain active and continue to launch attacks.