Head of United Iraq party murdered on eve of elections
An Iraqi policeman casts his ballot in Ramadi on June 17, 2013 as security forces vote in provincial polls ahead of the rest of Iraqis in the Anbar province. Iraq held provincial elections in April except in six provinces, including Anbar and Nineveh, where polls were delayed because authorities said security could not be guaranteed (Azhar Shallal / AFP)
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A suicide bombing in northern Iraq on Wednesday killed the lader of a provincial political party, along with four family members, on the eve of regional elections, AFP reported.
Yunus al-Ramah, head of the United Iraq party, was attacked at his home in the town of Al-Hadhr, in Nineveh province.
"The suicide bomber targeted people gathering in Ramah's garden," police First Lieutenant Islam al-Juburi told AFP.
Five people were killed -- Ramah and four of his relatives -- and six others wounded, Juburi and a doctor said.
Ramah's political party is perceived to be allied to Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki and a number of the party are due to run in the June 20 polls.
The attack took place the day before regional elections in Nineveh and Anbar, two Sunni-dominated provinces, where voting has been delayed from April 20 due to security concerns.
Iraq has experienced a wave of sectarian violence in recent months, as Sunni groups who feel marginalised by the Shiite led government unleashed a bombing campaign. May was the bloodiest month in Iraq since 2007, with more than 1,000 people killed according to the United Nations mission in the country.