BAGHDAD – A string of attacks across Iraq, including a coordinated wave of evening bombings in Baghdad, killed at least 45 people Monday as al-Qaida claimed responsibility for a recent spate of rare suicide attacks in the relatively peaceful Kurdish north.
Monday’s bombings marked the third day in a row that insurgents unleashed attacks powerful enough to claim fatalities numbering in the dozens. The mounting bloodshed is heightening worries that the country is returning to the widespread sectarian killing that marked the years following the 2003 U.S.-led invasion.
The rapid-fire wave of bombings that rocked the Iraqi capital shortly after nightfall struck at least eight different neighborhoods, according to police officials.
9 killed as attacks broaden in Egypt
A string of attacks killed nine members of Egypt’s security and military forces and hit the country’s main satellite communications station Monday, in an apparent retaliation by Islamic militants a day after more than 50 supporters of the ousted president were killed in clashes with police.
The attacks – the first strike against civilian infrastructure in the heart of Cairo – blur the lines between the wave of Islamist protests against the military ouster of President Mohammed Morsi, and an insurgency that had been previously been largely confined to the northern Sinai Peninsula.
Syrian forces retake key road to Aleppo
Syrian troops wrested control of a key road linking the government-held heartland with the embattled northern city of Aleppo, reopening the crucial supply route after heavy fighting with rebels, state media and activists said Monday.
Government forces and opposition fighters have been locked in a bloody, block-by-block fight for Aleppo since rebels launched an assault on the city 15 months ago. The battle has been locked in a stalemate, with neither side willing to relent with control of Syria’s largest city at stake.
Suspect guilty in deadly 2010 spree
The leader of a self-styled Bonnie and Clyde couple who staged a brazen prison escape and a three-week crime spree was convicted Monday of capital murder in the gruesome slayings of a retired Oklahoma couple who crossed their path on an eastern New Mexico highway.
John McCluskey was found guilty of murder, carjacking and other charges in the August 2010 deaths of Gary and Linda Haas of Tecumseh, Okla., who were making their annual summer trek to Colorado.
The same jurors will return to decide whether McCluskey, 48, should be sentenced to death or life in prison.
Football rape case expands to staff
An employee in the same district where two Ohio high school football players were convicted of raping a 16-year-old girl was charged Monday with interfering with a criminal matter, the first charges brought by a grand jury investigating whether other laws we broken in connection with the rape case.
The indictment announced by Attorney General Mike DeWine charges William Rhinaman of Steubenville City Schools with tampering with evidence, obstructing justice, obstructing official business and perjury.
Early blizzard takes heavy toll on cattle
A record-breaking storm that dumped 4 feet of snow in parts of western South Dakota left ranchers dealing with heavy losses, in some cases perhaps up to half their herds, as they assess how many of their cattle died during the unseasonably early blizzard.
Meanwhile, utility companies were working to restore power to tens of thousands of people still without electricity Monday after the weekend storm that was part of a powerful weather system also buried parts of Wyoming and Colorado with snow and produced destructive tornadoes in Nebraska and Iowa.
Stalled crane hangs weight over NYC
A concrete weight dangled for hours from a crane 40 floors above a street Monday, leading officials to close a long swath of a major thoroughfare near Carnegie Hall as a precaution until workers finally guided it safely to the ground before the evening rush hour started.
The closure on 57th Street, caused by a failed generator, created gridlock in a bustling area and raised fears that the weight could spiral out of control amid a forecast of strong storms that hit the city shortly after the weight reached the ground.
The construction site is where a crane’s boom collapsed and dangled dangerously during Superstorm Sandy.