Domestically it has been a brutal week for Iraqis, particularly in Baghdad and the surrounding areas where both the Sunni and Shia communities have been targeted by indiscriminate bombings and shootings.
Friday saw bombs left inside busy markets in mainly Sunni Muslim districts of Baghdad that killed at least 23 people with the deadliest attack taking place in Saba'a al-Bour on the capital's northern outskirts, where three bombs killed at least 15 people. In the Doura district of southern Baghdad, a bomb exploded in another market, killing at least eight people in what is further evidence that the Shia community is in the face of significant aggression and provocation reacting more strongly against Sunni insurgent groups and the wider Sunni community.
As the week continued the violence increased as insurgent groups targeted the Shia community with extreme prejudice as approximately 110 people were killed in a wave of bombings in the Shia neighbourhoods of Bagdad, Mussayab and Hilla. Sunday saw a suicide bomber blow himself up inside a Shi'ite Muslim mosque in the Iraqi town of Mussayab, killing at least 15 people and wounding a further 50 – 60 people as the blast brought down the roof of a mosque on worshippers, local sources reported. Further south and almost simultaneously at least 40 people were killed when a suicide bomber blew himself up at a Shiite Muslim funeral in the southern Iraq town of Hilla, 60km south of the Capital.
The end of the week did not bring a close to the violence as car bombs killed at least 54 people in mostly Shi'ite Muslim areas of Baghdad on Monday. On a frantic day altogether 14 bombs shook Baghdad, the deadliest of them in Sadr City, where a white car blew up near where men had gathered to seek work, killing seven people, including two soldiers.