Suspected Shiite militants bombed a Sunni mosque in southern Iraq on Sunday in apparent retaliation for a suicide attack the day before against a Shiite shrine in the same city that killed 11 people, police said.
The explosives blew a hole in the minaret of the Sunni mosque in Haswa, a city 30 miles south of Baghdad, but the mosque was empty and no casualties were reported. U.S. and Iraqi troops clashed with gunmen shortly after the attack on the mosque.
A second Sunni mosque was attacked but damage was reported to be minor, Reuters reported.
According to the AP, the attack came a day after a man driving a truck laden with explosives and boxes of new shoes struck a Shiite mosque in Haswa, destroying nearby stores as well as part of the shrine and its minaret.
Police said 45 people also were injured in that blast.
Meanwhile, the Islamic State in Iraq, an umbrella group that includes al-Qaeda in Iraq, purportedly claimed responsibility for three suicide bombings Saturday near the Anbar province city of Qaem, near the Syrian border, saying in an Internet statement that 45 policemen were killed and 48 were wounded. Police said only six people had been killed, including five policemen, and 19 other people wounded.
In all, at least 74 people were killed or found dead in Iraq on Saturday.