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23 KILLED AS BOMB BLASTED IN IRAQ'S WESTERN ANBAR PROVINCE

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BAGHDAD – Twin bombings, one an assassination attempt against an Iraqi provincial governor, killed 23 people and wounded the governor in the worst violence in months to hit the western province that was once al-Qaida's top stronghold in Iraq.
While violence in Iraq has dropped considerably since the height of the conflict, a reinvigorated insurgency in Anbar which is also Iraq's largest province could pose a serious risk to the country's stability as it prepares for March elections.
  • Two bombs exploded in Anbar's capital of Ramadi, 70 miles (115 kilometers) west of Baghdad, said police Lt. Col. Imad al-Fahdawi. First, a car driven by a suicide bomber blew up near a checkpoint on the main road near the provincial administration buildings.
  • "When the first explosion occurred, the governor walked out of his office, heading to the site to see what happened," al-Fahdawi said.
  • "A second suicide bomber with an explosives belt and wearing a military uniform tried to make his way through the crowd of people and was stopped by guards of the governor," and then blew himself up just yards from the governor, al-Fahdawi said.
  • It was not known whether the first bomb was designed to lure the governor out of his office, but insurgents commonly use staggered explosions as a way to maximize damage as rescuers and security officials rush to the scene.
Source: AP
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