String of Deadly Blasts Rocks Iraqi Capital
TEHRAN (Tasnim) - At least 50 people have been killed and scores more wounded in a series of bombs in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, medical and police officials said.
At least 38 people were killed in two car bombings in Shiite-dominated areas of western Baghdad on Saturday night. A third blast caused by a suicide bomber killed another 12 people and injured 40 others.
Al Jazeera's Imran Khan, reporting from Baghdad, said the explosions happened within minutes of each other and that they may be linked to events in western Iraq, where the Iraqi army, supported by foreign air strikes, is battling the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant terrorist group.
"What we normally see, is when car bombs go off it is normally as a result of an action that's taking place in Anbar province. Usually against ISIL fighters." he said.
Anbard, just west of Baghdad, has been the scene of intense battles between Iraqi government forces and ISIL fighters, who have taken control of large sections of northern and western Iraq this year.
In other violence, four Iraqi soldiers died in a friendly-fire incident in the town of Udaim, 90km northeast of Baghdad.
The soldiers, who had been wounded by ISIL fighters, were being taken to hospital when Shia volunteer fighters mistook them for ISIL members and fired a rocket-propelled grenade at their vehicle, police and medical officials said.
Saturday's violence came as ominous warnings were sounded that ISIL could be close to taking over the whole of western Anbar province.
US defence officials said Iraqi government forces were in a "tenuous" position in Anbar, where the few remaining government-controlled areas have come under repeated attack from ISIL.