Security officials say at least 12 Iraqis have suffered injuries when two bombs went off in quick succession in the northern oil-rich city of Kirkuk. A police source, speaking on condition of anonymity, said on Tuesday that the first blast took place in the al-Tesaeen neighborhood of the city, situated about 290 kilometers (175 miles) north of Baghdad, when an explosives-laden car was detonated. Moments later, an improvised explosive device was set off as police forces and civil defense brigade arrived at the scene of the first explosion. Twelve civilians were hurt in both attacks. On Monday night, police inspector Qassem Abdellatif was killed along with one of his brothers in a car bomb explosion in Kirkuk.
Bombings and shootings have recently increased across Iraq, and many believe that the attacks are being carried out to undermine the central government.Official figures show that September was the bloodiest month in Iraq in almost two years, with attacks killing 365 people, the highest monthly death toll since August 2010. The statistics, which were compiled by the health, interior, and defense ministries, show that 182 civilians, 88 police officers, and 95 soldiers were killed in attacks in September. The violence reached a crescendo on September 8 and 9, when more than 30 attacks killed at least 88 people and injured more than 400. September 30 was the second deadliest day of the month, with a death toll of 33 and 106 injured. Violence has increased in Iraq since December 2011, when an arrest warrant was issued for fugitive Vice President Tariq al-Hashemi, who has been charged with running a death squad targeting Iraqi officials and Shia Muslims. In response, the government has stepped up efforts to increase security across the country over the past few months. MP/AS