5 Iraqis killed in bombings, shooting

By SINAN SALAHEDDIN | August 13, 2011 | 7:59 AM EDT

BAGHDAD (AP) — Bombings and shootings, including an attack near cafes and ice cream shops, killed five Iraqis and wounded 14 in the capital and a western town, officials said Saturday.

A roadside bomb on Saturday hit a joint Iraqi police-army patrol as it parked by a drinking water plant in the town of al-Baghdadi, local administrator Hikmat Jubeir said. The blast, at around 9 a.m., killed a soldier and a policeman and wounded another soldier, he said.

Al-Baghdadi town is in Anbar province, which was once a stronghold of the Sunni insurgency.

Also Saturday, gunmen in a speeding car shot and killed a Shiite cleric as he left an Electricity Ministry office in the New Baghdad district of the capital, a police officer said. The motive in the shooting was not immediately known, the officer said. A doctor at a nearby hospital confirmed the death.

Hours earlier, a bomb exploded around midnight Friday in Baghdad's western Jamiaa neighborhood near cafes and ice cream shops, killing two civilians and wounding 13 others, a police officer said. A doctor at a nearby hospital confirmed the casualty figures.

All officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to talk to the media.

Iraq has seen a general drop in violence since 2008 after a peak of violence, but sporadic attacks still occur around the country. With the ebb in violence, Iraqis have started going out in the evenings more, especially during the current holy month of Ramadan, when Muslims fast from dawn to sunset.