Iraq parliament blast: At least eight dead, including three lawmakers
A suicide bomber blew himself up in the Iraqi parliament on Thursday. At least eight people, including three lawmakers, were killed. According to press reports, the blast took place at the cashier's register in the cafe at a time when many members of parliament were having lunch. Parliament was in session on Thursday.
The parliament building is located in the heavily fortified Green Zone in Baghdad. State television reported as many as 30 wounded.
Mohammed Awad, a member of the Sunni National Dialogue Front, was killed in the blast, said Saleh al-Mutlaq, the leader of the party, which holds 11 seats in Iraq's legislature. Another female Sunni lawmaker from the same list was injured, he said. A security official at the parliament building said a second lawmaker, a Shiite member, also was killed.
US Maj. Gen. William Caldwell said witness accounts indicated a suicide attack.
"We don't know at this point who it was. We do know in the past that suicide vests have been used predominantly by al-Qaida," the U.S. military spokesman told the AP.
Khalaf al-Ilyan, one of the three leaders of the Iraqi Accordance Front, which holds 44 seats, said the attack was "aimed at everyone — all parties - our parliament in general being a symbol and a representative of all segments of Iraqi society."
Al-Ilyan, who is in Jordan recovering from knee surgery, said the blast also "underlines the failure of the government's security plan."