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Bombs in Tikrit and Samarra kill more than a dozen in Iraq

A car bomb at a market in Iraq has killed at least 15 people. A recent spike in attacks has killed thousands, raising fears of a return to the violence that pushed the country to the brink of civil war in 2006 and 2007.

Police officials said a pickup truck exploded at night at the entrance of a wholesale fruit and vegetable market in a primarily Sunni Muslim district in the city of Samarra, 100 kilometers (60 miles) north of the capital, Baghdad. They said the explosion also injured more than 30 people and damaged several shops.

In Tikrit, about 170 kilometers north of Baghdad, a roadside bomb hit an army patrol killing one soldier and wounding three.

No group claimed immediate responsibility for the attacks.

According to UN estimates, attacks killed 979 people in September, one of the country's highest monthly tolls in at least five years. An increase in attacks that began in April has killed more than 5,000 people.

mkg/hc (Reuters, AFP, dpa, AP)