Over 100 Killed in Attacks During Ramadan in Iraq

Iraq's Shi'ite community and government officials were targeted in a series of attacks around the country that killed at least 125 people soon after the beginning of the Muslims' holy month of Ramadan.

While the attacks on Sunday were targeted mainly at the Shi'ite population, on Monday security forces and government officials were killed.

Monday's coordinated attacks in 13 cities left at least 103 people dead and about 200 wounded, according to The Associated Press. The blasts took place within a few hours of each other.

Bearing the brunt was the town of Taji, about 12 miles north of the capital city of Baghdad, where bombs planted around five houses in the Sunni town exploded an hour after dawn, killing 17. When police rushed to the scene, a suicide bomber in the crowd targeted them, killing 11 personnel.

At an army base near the north-eastern town of town of Udaim, gunmen in three cars opened fire, killing 13 soldiers.

On Sunday, a day after the fasting month of Ramadan began, attacks on mostly Shi'ite areas claimed the lives of 25 people and injured about 100, CNN reported.

A car bomb exploded outside a popular restaurant in the central city of Najaf, about 100 miles south of Baghdad, killing 14 people on Sunday morning.

Before dawn, three roadside bombs exploded within a few minutes of each other at the crowded al-Tameem market in a predominantly Shi'ite area in Baghdad's southern outskirts and killed 15 people.

Five more were killed when a car bomb exploded in the Mahmoudiya market, another Shi'ite area about 19 miles south of the capital.

In the Falluja area in Anbar province, a sniper killed an Iraqi soldier, followed by a car explosion in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul that killed a policeman.

The attacks come amid ongoing attempts by al-Qaida in Iraq to reorganize in areas from which it retreated before U.S. troops left the country last December. The assaults appear to be aimed at maintaining instability and insecurity in Iraq to undermine the government led by the Shia Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki.

The majority of the attacks in Iraq have been attributed to Sunni insurgents.

"The majority of the Sunnis in Iraq support al-Qaida and are waiting for its return," Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, head of the Islamic State of Iraq since 2010, said in a recent statement.

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