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Roadside Bombs In Baghdad Kill Eight


BAGHDAD (Reuters) -- Two roadside bombs have killed eight people in Shi'ite areas of Baghdad as pilgrims streamed home from a major Shi'ite religious rite south of the capital, Iraqi police said.

One bomb killed four pilgrims in a minibus and wounded 13 others in Kamaliyah, a Shi'ite area of eastern Baghdad, on their return from Arbain, an annual pilgrimage that attracts hundreds of thousands of Shi'ites from Iraq and beyond.

The explosion came several hours after another roadside bomb killed four people and wounded 13, in the sprawling slum of Sadr City, a stronghold in northeastern Baghdad of supporters of radical Shi'ite Muslim cleric Muqtada al-Sadr.

There were conflicting reports about whether those targeted in that attack were also pilgrims.

Baghdad has been relatively empty for days with many from Iraq's Shi'ite majority making the journey to the holy city of Karbala, 80 kilometers south of the capital.

Arbain marks the end of an annual mourning period for the death in a 7th-century battle of Hussein, the Prophet Muhammad's grandson.

Violence has fallen sharply across Iraq after years of sectarian warfare and resistance to the 2003 U.S.-led invasion. But suicide and car bomb attacks remain common.