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Violence in Iraq kills three and injures Iranian pilgrims

From Mohammed Tawfeeq, CNN
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: Gunmen kill two in separate Baghdad incidents
  • Three soldiers are injured during an attack targeting an Iraqi police checkpoint
  • Seven Iranian pilgrims headed to the holy Shiite city of Karbala are injured from a roadside bomb
  • Shiites are observing Muharram, one of the holiest months in the Muslim calendar

(CNN) -- A series of attacks Wednesday killed two government officials and a civilian and injured 20, including a group of Iranian pilgrims marking the holy month of Muharrram.

In the al-Taji area, about 20 kilometers (12 miles) north of Baghdad, a car bomb targeting an Iraqi police checkpoint killed at least one civilian and wounded 12, including three Iraqi soldiers, Baghdad police said.

In a separate incident, a roadside bomb exploded upon a bus carrying Iranian pilgrims on a highway in the Dora district in southern Baghdad. At least seven people were wounded.The Iranian pilgrims were headed to the holy Shiite city of Karbala to visit the Imam Hussein Shrine there.

Muharrram is one of the holiest months in the Muslim calendar. During the first 10 days of the month of Muharrram, Shiites commemorate the martyrdom of Hussein bin Ali, grandson of the prophet Mohammed and the third Imam of Shiite Muslims.

In a third attack, a roadside bomb struck a civilian car in the Saba al-Bour district of northern Baghdad, wounding one civilian.

Gunmen used pistols equipped with silencers to kill an official with the Interior Ministry near his home in al-Amriya neighborhood in western Baghdad, police officers said. The shooting occurred Wednesday evening.

And gunmen used pistols equipped with silencers to kill Omer Jasim Mohammed, an accountant with the Iraq's Higher Judicial Council, in the al-Amil neighborhood in southwestern Baghdad, officials said.