A series of car bomb blasts across Iraq have killed at least 21 people and injured 100 others, police and hospital sources told Reuters, raising fears of sectarian strife in a country whose authorities are always stressing to show that they can maintain security without foreign assistance.
An interior ministry official said the bombings were carried out on early Wednesday morning in Baghdad and three other cities in northern Iraq.
At least nine people were killed and more than 30 others injured in two car bomb attacks and a roadside bombing in the city of Kirkuk, inside the region's rich oil reserves 240 km north of Baghdad.
In the town of Hawijah, in Kirkuk province, another explosives-packed vehicle targeting an Iraqi army patrol left six dead and seven others wounded, according to police and hospital officials, AFP news reported.
At the scene of the attack, dozens of ambulances and rescue workers were trying to evacuate the wounded and search the rubble while relatives gathered nearby.
Another blast targeted Baghdad’s Firdos Square, where a car bomb explosion killed one person and injured six others.
Elsewhere, in the city of Hilla, south of Baghdad, a car bomb in a parking lot near a crowded marketplace, killed five people and wounded 35 others, police and medics said.
No group has yet claimed responsibility for Wednesday attacks.
It is worth mentioning that these attacks occurred amid a highly tense political climate. Several political parties, including several Kurdish and Sunni leaders, have accused Shiite Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, who took office in 2006, of seeking to impose a new dictatorship in Iraq.
Earlier, a senior officials at the Ministry of Interior said that 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.
As long as the Iraqi government, headed by Maliki, fights the Sunni presence in Iraq, the bombings will continue. The bombings of today is a prelude to many bombings that will occur in the coming 10 days, where Shi'ites celebrate Ashura, which usually, despite security precautions by the government, the explosions occur therein, leading to dozens of Shiite victims.
The Iraqi government should review its attitudes towards iraqi Sunnis and perhaps the provocation that happened last December. The Maliki government issued an arrest warrant for the Vice President Tariq al-Hashemi, charging him with running a death squad that targeted Iraqi officials and Shia Muslims.
This made things unbearable and proved that al-Maliki is fomenting sedition among the Iraqi people, who were coherent during the long years of the Republic of Iraq.
Other indications that the Iraqi government is continuing its sectarianism fight include the issuance of four death sentences against al-Hashemi. Many countries, including America and European countries, advised al-Maliki not to continue in this dirty war against Iraq Sunnis.
Al-Qaida is still active in Iraq, and the question that Iraqis ask is why, when America was occupying Iraq beginning in 2003, it could not eliminate al-Qaida. Will the Maliki government be able to do so?
We hereby must mention one of the advantages of the rule of , which was security and stability. We did not hear about the existence of terrorism and bombings, which certainly began to occur after the US invasion of Iraq. It has been shown recently that causes for this occupation claimed by management were not true.
Obama promised a withdraw from Iraq, and he fulfilled his promise. Is America committed to any other promises given to Iraq, such as restoring the reconstruction of Iraq? Furthermore, is this the democracy that the Iraqis had dreamed of? I personally hope that the Arab spring reaches Iraq to bring everything back as it was in the reign of Saddam, who applied the spring the Iraqis deserve before the spring encouraged by the US administration last year.