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Wave of attacks in Iraqi capital kills at least 24

– A wave of attacks, mostly by car bombs, hit mainly Shiite and commercial areas of Baghdad on Wednesday morning, killing at least 24 people and wounding 87, Iraqi officials said.

The bombings were part of a surge in violence that has rocked Iraq over the past months as insurgents seek to thwart the Shiite-led government’s efforts to stabilize the country.

Five of Wednesday’s attacks were carried out by parked car bombs while at least one was carried out by a remotely detonated bomb, police officials said. The deadliest attack was in the central Sadria neighborhood, where a parked car bomb went off at an outdoor market, killing five shoppers and wounding 15, they said.

Other attacks took place in Hurriyah, Shaab, Tobchi, Karrada, Azamiyah and Amil neighborhoods.

Medical officials confirmed the causality figures. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity as they were not authorized to talk to media.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attacks, but suicide and large-scale bombings – especially against security forces or crowded markets – are a favorite tactic of al-Qaida’s local branch and Sunni insurgents.

The surge of attacks followed a deadly security raid on a Sunni protest camp in the country’s north in April. Since then, more than 5,500 people have been killed in attacks by insurgents in Iraq, according to the United Nations.

Wednesday’s attacks bring the death toll across the country this month to 233, according to an Associated Press count.

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