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Deadly bomb blast targets worshipers in northern Iraq

Published: Updated:

An explosion targeting a crowd of worshippers on Tuesday, as they left a mosque in Iraq after prayers marking the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha, killed 12 people, police and medical sources told Agence France-Presse.

The blast at a Sunni mosque in Kirkuk, northern Iraq also wounded 24 people, according to sources.

Muslim worshipers around the world gathered at mosques for dawn prayers to mark the beginning of the four-day Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha on Friday.

Eid al-Adha - the Feast of Sacrifice - marks the end of hajj, an annual pilgrimage undertaken by some 1.5 million Muslims this year in Saudi Arabia.

In Iraq, numerous attacks have been carried out on both Sunni and Shiite mosques this year, raising fears of a return to the all-out sectarian conflict that peaked in 2006-2007 and killed tens of thousands of people.

The death toll so far this month stands at more than 300, and over 5,000 since the beginning of the year, according to AFP figures based on security and medical sources.

(With AFP)