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Bombings, clashes kill at least 26, wound 80 in Iraq

Bombings and clashes in Iraq killed at least 26 people and wounded 80 others on Wednesday, an Interior Ministry source said.

A car bomb struck a wedding party in the neighborhood of Jihad, southwestern Baghdad, killing at least 16 people and wounding 46 others, the source told Xinhua anonymously.

Another car bomb was set off in a market in Gezaliya in western Baghdad, killing at least four people and wounding 16, the source said.

Elsewhere, in Baqouba, the capital of Diyala province, some 65 km northeastern of Baghdad, two roadside bombings in a popular football field killed at least three and wounded 13 others.

Earlier in the day, a police officer and two policemen guarding an outpost near the Iraqi-Syrian border in Iraq's western province of Anbar were killed in a clash with gunmen, a source from Anbar province said on condition of anonymity.

Unidentified gunmen attacked the outpost located near the al- Walid border crossing point with Syria and exchanged fire with the Iraqi border guards, killing the officer and two policemen before they fled the scene into the Syrian territories, the source told Xinhua.

In the meantime, Iraqi security forces captured Adnan Waies who is said to be one of al-Qaida leaders in Anbar province, during an operation in the country's western desert, where the group militants believed to be holed up, the source said.

The capture of Waies was part of a major military offensive, dubbed 'al-Shabah' or fantom in English, aiming at hunting down al- Qaida militants in the vast desert area of the Sunni heartland of Anbar province.

Also on Wednesday, the governor of Salahudin province in north of Baghdad escaped unharmed from two bomb attacks which wounded five of his bodyguards, a provincial police source told Xinhua.

On Monday, a wave of deadly car bomb attacks swept Baghdad, killing at least 34 people and wounding some 155.

Violence is still common in Iraq despite a dramatic decrease since its peak in 2006 and 2007, when the country was engulfed in sectarian killings.

[Source: Xinhua, Baghdad, 29May13]

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