Al-Jazeerah: Cross-Cultural Understanding
News, January 2015
14 Iraqis Killed, 58 Injured in Samarra, Yousufiya, and Ba'aqouba Fighting and Bombing,
January 8, 2015
Sites of Samarra car bombing and fighting (top right and left), Al-Yousufiya (bottom left) and Ba'aqouba (bottom right), Iraq, January 8, 2015.
Car bombs explode at checkpoints in Iraq's Samarra, three dead
BAGHDAD Thu Jan 8, 2015 4:35am EST
Car bombs exploded at three checkpoints on the western outskirts of the Iraqi city of Samarra on Thursday, killing three people and wounding 41 others, a security official and locals said.
Samarra in central Iraq, 125 km (80 miles) north of Baghdad, is home to a significant Shi'ite shrine and has been under attack since Islamic State fighters swept through most Sunni areas north of the capital in June.
The three bombs before sunrise on Thursday killed a civilian and two policemen as well as wounding dozens of others, and were followed by a hail of rocket and mortar fire, the official said.
Then, after several hours of fighting with security forces, gunmen retreated under fire from Iraqi warplanes, he said.
(Reporting by Saif Hameed; Writing by Ned Parker; Editing by Louise Ireland)
IS fighters launch major attack on Iraq's Samarra
TIKRIT, Iraq, Jan. 8, 2015 (Xinhua) --
Islamic State (IS) fighters launched a major attack on Samarra, a city of Iraq's northern central province of Salahudin, a provincial security source said.
The attack occurred at dawn when five suicide bombers blew up their explosive-laden trucks near the security checkpoints on a highway and at the western entrance of Samarra, some 120km north of the Iraqi capital of Baghdad, the source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.
The massive bombings were followed by mortar barrage on security positions inside the city while dozens of IS fighters advanced in an attempt to enter the city from the western side, the source said.
Security forces opened fire on the booby-trapped trucks, which blew up just before they reached their targets, amid heavy clashes between government forces, aided by allied Shiite militiamen, and the attackers, the source added.
IS fighters were forced to withdraw after government reinforcement rushed to the city from several military bases around the city, the source said.
At least seven people were killed, including the five suicide bombers. Twenty-two civilians, 19 policemen and militiamen were wounded, the source added.
Large parts of the Salahudin province have been under IS control since June 11, a day after bloody clashes broke out between Iraqi security forces and the group which had controlled the country's northern city of Mosul and later seized swathes of territories in Nineveh, another northern city, and other predominantly Sunni provinces.
Late last year, Iraq's firebrand Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr ordered his followers to prepare for jihad, or holy war, against the IS militants to protect the holy shrines in Samarra as the IS pushed forward in northern and central parts of the country.
The predominantly Sunni city of Samarra is home to the provincial operations command of Salahudin and the Shiite shrine of Imam Ali al-Hadi. The shrine contains the tombs of Ali al-Hadi and his son Hassan al-Askari, the 10th and 11th of the Shiites' 12 most revered Imams.
6 Killed, 41 Injured in Samarra Fighting and Bombing
5 Killed, 13 Injured in Al-Yousufiya Bombing
3 Killed, 4 Injured in Two Ba'aqouba Bombings
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