By NVONews.Com Correspondent,
No fewer than 70 people, mostly Shia pilgrims, were killed in 21 blasts in at least half a dozen cities of Iraq, including Baghdad, on Wednesday. The explosions––a by-product of the US invasion of Iraq––took place on the death anniversary of Shia Imam Moussa al-Kazim, a great-grandson of Prophet Mohammad.
Though western media is quick to blame the Sunni extremists for the blasts it remained unclear as to who caused them. There is no dearth of people working to widen the division within the Shia and Sunni sects of Islam.
Wednesday was thus one of the bloodiest days since the withdrawal of the US troops from the country in December last.
Though Shias and Sunnis have political and historical differences Iraq had a history of near peaceful existence of both the sects till the US invasion. Thousands of people were killed in such explosions in the country, especially in 2006 and 2007.
Experts are of the view that these blasts are being triggered to cause fissures within Sunni, Shia and Kurds communities and plunge the country into civil war. With Syria already in turmoil tension in Iraq would certainly work in favour of the West and justify their intervention in the region.
Wednesday’s toll may cross 73, the highest number of casualties suffered last January when four blasts rocked Baghdad.
In the biggest incident on Wednesday at least 30 people were killed when four blasts hit pilgrims across Baghdad as Shias marched through the city to mark the anniversary of Imam.
A car bomb exploded outside a Shia mosque in the city while another blast tore into groups of pilgrims as they rested at refreshment tents along the route to a shrine in Kadhimiya district.
In Shia dominated southern city of Hilla, police said two simultaneous car bombs, including one detonated by a suicide bomber, exploded outside restaurants used by security forces, killing 22 people.
When a minibus packed with policemen stopped near the restaurants, a car exploded near the bus.
Bombs also exploded in Kerbala, Balad and Haswa, all having Shia domination.
One person was killed when two bombs exploded in offices of an ethnic Kurdish party in the northern city of Kirkuk.
It needs to be recalled that earlier this month, 26 people were killed and more than 190 wounded when a suicide bomber detonated an explosive-rigged car outside a Shia religious office in Baghdad.
Though critics blame Iraq’s Shia Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki for his failure there are elements within his Shia sects too who are not inclined to support him. Sunnis, who always enjoyed power during the Saddam era and earlier too, are feeling disempowered. So there is no doubt a lot of uneasiness in the society. The vested interests are busy exploiting the situation for their own end.