At least 10 dead in Iraq blasts as Shiite parties form new bloc

Published August 24th, 2009 - 03:39 GMT

At least 10 people died and 19 were hurt, including women and children, when bombs went off on two buses near Iraq's southern city of Kut on Monday, a police officer told AFP. The first bomb went off around 2.30pm (1130 GMT) 15 kilometres north of Kut, causing eight deaths and leaving eight injured, he said.


The second explosion took place half an hour later 40 kilometres north of the southern city, the regional capital of Wasit province, leading to two deaths and 11 wounded.


Meanwhile, prominent Shiite parties have established a new alliance that will exclude the Iraqi prime minister's party, lawmakers said Monday. According to the AP, the coalition will include the largest Shiite party, the Iranian-backed Supreme Iraqi Islamic Council and anti-U.S. cleric Muqtada al-Sadr's bloc, as well as some small Sunni and secular parties.


Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's Dawa Party was left out after the sides disagreed over leadership and other organizational issues as well as al-Maliki's wish to broaden the coalition to include more prominent Sunnis and Kurds, officials said.



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