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A surge of violence across predominantly Shia areas in Iraq killed at least 36 people on Sunday.
Two car bombs detonated in Hilla, killing around 15 civilians, while a slew of other bombs targeted the cities of Baghdad, Basra, Nasiriya, and Karbala. Sunday’s wave of bombs mark a pattern of growing violence in Iraq.
Abu Ahmed, a Hilla citizen, told Reuters , “I was about to get my breakfast in a nearby restaurant when a huge explosion happened and smoke and dust filled the place. Before I had taken a step forward another explosion happen [...] I ran to check on my son who was covering for me in my shop and found him covered with blood among many other bodies. There is no trace left of my shop.”
Al Jazeera America reports over 800 Iraqis killed in August alone, a number which raises fears that Iraq is seeing a resurgence of the factional violence of just six years ago, when monthly death tolls sometimes reached 3,000.
Tension between Sunni and Shia Muslims fuel much of the violence in Iraq, with the Sunni minority claiming they receive unfair treatment from the Shia government. Many also believe that Iraq’s internal disputes are intensified by the civil war in neighboring Syria.
No group has taken responsibility for the attacks as of yet.