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THE STANS
Double bombing kills six in Iraq's disputed Kirkuk: security source
by Staff Writers
Kirkuk, Iraq (AFP) Nov 5, 2017


A twin suicide attack killed at least six people Sunday in the centre of Iraq's disputed Kirkuk city, a security official said.

The attackers struck near a former police station used by Saraya al-Salam, a Shiite paramilitary force led by powerful Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr, the official said on condition of anonymity.

Twelve people were also wounded in the two explosions, about 15 minutes apart.

The first attacker blew up an explosives-rigged car, followed by the second, who used an explosive belt, the official added.

The attack struck Atlas Street, a key shopping area in the heart of the city of a million residents.

Sadr's force, formerly known as the Mahdi Army, is part of the Hashed al-Shaabi paramilitary alliance that has battled both the Islamic State group and Kurdish forces.

Iraqi security forces backed by the Hashed in mid-October seized oil-rich Kirkuk province from Kurdish peshmerga forces in the wake of a Kurdish independence vote held in defiance of Baghdad.

Kurdish media have since accused the Hashed, an alliance composed mainly of Shiite militias, of carrying out a campaign of retribution against Kurdish civilians.

THE STANS
Iraq dispute kicks off crisis for Kurdish sports
Baghdad (AFP) Nov 5, 2017
Sports clubs and players in Iraqi Kurdistan are facing the threat of a spell on the sidelines as the crisis between the region and Baghdad sees matches suspended and away trips cancelled. For the first time ever, two basketball teams from the region will miss the start of the Iraqi league season, after Kurdish authorities and the central government went from a war of words about a vote for i ... read more

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