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Further bombing in Iraq, Sunni mosque targeted

A suicide bomber has killed at least 15 people inside a Sunni mosque in central Iraq. The latest unrest brings to 450 the number of people killed across Iraq in July.

A bomb went off inside a Sunni mosque in the central Iraqi town of Wijaihiya on Friday, killing at least 15 people. Security officials said the suicide attacker struck as worshippers were leaving.

Doctors said at least 50 other people were wounded.

Provincial councilman Sadiq al-Husseini said the blast targeted the town's Abu Bakir al-Sideeq mosque. There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

The town of Wajihiya lies in the ethnically and religiously diverse province of Diyala, east of the regional capital Baquba and some 60 kilometers northeast of the Iraqi capital Baghdad.

Areas around Baquba have seen a series of attacks in recent weeks, including a bombing on Tuesday that targeted a Sunni mosque in Moqdadiyah (pictured above).

The surge in retaliatory Sunni-Shiite attacks has raised fears of a return to the sectarian violence that brought Iraq to the brink of civil war in 2006-07 after the 2003 US-led invasion.

Since the April, violence across Iraq has claimed more than 2,800 lives.

Tensions have been inflamed by the civil war in neighboring Syria, which has drawn in Shiite and Sunni fighters, who fight on opposite sides.

ipj/tj (AP, Reuters, dpa, AFP)