Café blast, car bomb kill eight in Iraq

Bloodshed in Iraq has increased during the past year, reaching levels not seen since 2008

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A bombing at a cafe north of Baghdad and a series of car bombs in central Iraq killed at least eight people on Thursday, officials and doctors said.

Iraq has been hit by a year-long surge in bloodshed that has reached levels not seen since 2008, driven by widespread discontent among its Sunni Arab minority and by the civil war in neighboring Syria.

The cafe bombing, which hit a town east of the city of Baquba, also wounded seven people.

In the past year, militants have frequently targeted cafes, where crowds of people gather at night.

Earlier in the day, a car bomb in Mishahada, north of Baghdad, killed at least two people and wounded 15, while four others south of the capital killed a total of two people and wounded eight.

The attacks came after 10 bombings and three shootings in and around Baghdad killed at least 21 people on Wednesday.

Violence in Iraq has killed more than 1,800 people since January 1, according to AFP figures based on security and medical sources.

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