Death toll in Iraq pilgrimage bombings reaches 72

Topics: From the Wires,

Death toll in Iraq pilgrimage bombings reaches 72People inspect the scene of a car bomb attack in the Karrada neighborhood of Baghdad, Iraq, Wednesday, June 13, 2012. Wave of bombings targeted religious processions during the annual pilgrimage commemorating the 8th century death of a revered Shiite imam, killing and wounding scores of people, police said. (AP Photo/Karim Kadim) (Credit: AP)

BAGHDAD (AP) — Security for a major Shiite pilgrimage has been tightened in Baghdad, a day after coordinated bomb attacks mostly targeting religious processions killed at least 72 people.

Main Baghdad streets have been closed off with concrete blocks as the annual commemorations continue. Wednesday’s bombings targeted pilgrims walking to the shrine of the eighth-century Imam Moussa al-Kadhim.

Two officials from Interior and Health Ministries said Thursday that the 22 explosions that struck seven cities Wednesday also wounded 273 people. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk to the media.

The attacks came amid political tension over power-sharing. Iraq’s Sunnis and Kurds accuse the Shiite prime minister of consolidating power in his own hands.

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