BAGHDAD – A recent jump in violence across Iraq continued Wednesday, with at least 16 people killed and 45 wounded in various attacks, including seven involving improvised bombs. More than 55 people were killed and more than 110 were wounded on Tuesday.
Maj. Gen. Kevin Bergner, the top U.S. military spokesman in Iraq, said the attacks were part of what’s become an annual increase in violence during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, which ends this weekend. He said the attacks were mounted mainly by al-Qaida in Iraq, which he said is trying to reverse a growing movement among fellow Sunni Muslims who are turning against it.
“This spike in violence largely targets those it sees as most threatening to it: Iraqi security force leaders, concerned local citizens and other local citizens in areas that are in the process of rejecting al-Qaida,” he said.
As Ramadan began, the terrorist group vowed that it would target Sunnis who turned against it or worked with U.S. troops or the Iraqi government.
Coalition troops operating west of Baghdad reporting killing 13 terrorists Wednesday, including one wearing a suicide bomb.