At Least 23 Killed in Day’s Violence

Times Staff Writer

Bombings and shootings killed at least 23 people in Iraq on Sunday as the U.S. military announced the death of another American soldier.

The military said the soldier, who was serving in the 3rd Brigade Combat Team of the 4th Infantry Division, was killed a day earlier by an improvised explosive device south of Baqubah.

Meanwhile, an Al Qaeda-led group posted footage on the Internet on Sunday showing the killing of two men said to be Russian hostages seized in Iraq this month, Iraqi and Arab television channels reported.

The images, posted on a website often used by militants, reportedly showed two masked militants beheading one man and shooting another. It also showed the beheaded body of a third. The fate of a fourth hostage was not clear.


In downtown Baghdad, a roadside bomb in a busy marketplace killed at least one Iraqi and injured 19, and another roadside bomb targeting a security contractor’s vehicle injured at least five people. A third attack killed two Iraqis and injured 23, police said. A car bombing targeting police commandos in Baghdad killed one officer and wounded three.

Hospital officials reported receiving the bodies of 10 civilians shot to death in various parts of west Baghdad. One, a Sudanese employee of a local cellphone company, was found in his car with $8,000 cash, a hospital official said. A drive-by shooting in Baqubah left at least three former Iraqi army officers dead as clashes between insurgents and Iraqi soldiers broke out at a nearby checkpoint.

In Taji, site of a mass kidnapping of factory workers last week, 10 employees of a state-owned agricultural research center were abducted, police said.

Security officials in Kirkuk reported the drive-by shooting deaths of three Shiite Muslim civilians in the restive Sunnimajority city of Hawija.

Insurgents bombed the offices of a Shiite political party in the usually peaceful, mostly Christian town of Bartala near Mosul, killing two guards and injuring four, police said, calling it the first terrorist attack in the district since the fall of Saddam Hussein’s regime in 2003.

In the southern city of Basra, witnesses reported the killing of a Sunni Arab shop owner by Shiite militiamen. Three armed men killed Mahmoud Faysal after he had closed his store, his brother said.

“The men opened fire targeting my brother while he was getting on his motorcycle,” he said. “When he fell off, the armed men stood over him and shot four bullets to his head.”



Special correspondents in Basra, Kirkuk and Mosul contributed to this report.