Baghdad, Feb 24: Seven people and three helicopter crew members were killed Sunday and 26 wounded in separate violent attacks across Iraq, mainly targeting Iraqi security forces, police said.
In Salahudin province, a car bomb went off near a convoy of police commando force carrying detainees near the city of Baiji, leaving three commandos and two detainees killed and four commandos wounded, a police source told Xinhua.
The detainees were captured Saturday from the nearby town of Seiniyah, some 50 km north of the provincial capital city of Tikrit, which was the scene of fierce clashes between gunmen and police that left four policemen killed and six injured.
The security forces later conducted a search operation to chase the attackers and apparently detained a number of suspects.
A soldier was killed and four others were wounded in a roadside bomb explosion near their car on their way back from a vacation at a village near the city of Shirqat, the source said.
Also in the province, four policemen were wounded in a roadside blast near their patrol in western Tuz-Khurmato, some 90 km east of Tikrit, the source added.
Salahudin province is a Sunni-dominated province, and Tikrit is the hometown of former president Saddam Hussein.
In Iraq’s northern province of Nineveh, gunmen shot dead a brother of a member of Nineveh’s provincial council while he was driving in the northern part of the provincial capital city of Mosul, a police source said.
In a separate incident, a roadside bomb struck an army patrol in northeastern Mosul, leaving three soldiers wounded, the source added.
In Baghdad, three policemen were wounded when a roadside bomb went off near their patrol in Palestine Street in the eastern part of the capital, police said.
In addition, three people were wounded in a roadside bomb blast in Sadr City district in eastern Baghdad, while two people were wounded in another roadside bomb in Hurriyah district in the northwestern part of the capital.
In western Iraq, a bomb attached to the car of a city council member exploded in the city of Haditha, wounding him and two of his bodyguards, a police source said.
Police said that an Iraqi army helicopter crashed late Saturday at a desert outside Abu Ghraib area, some 25 km west of Baghdad, killing all three crew members onboard.
The helicopter suffered technical problems when it was above an area where the army was engaged in battles with anti-government tribal fighters and some militant groups in the western province of Anbar.
Iraq is witnessing its worst violence in recent years. According to the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq, a total of 8,868 Iraqis, including 7,818 civilians and civilian police personnel, were killed in 2013, the highest annual death toll in years.