Baghdad bus bomber kills 30

A suicide bomber killed 30 passengers, most of whom were Shia women, children and students, in an attack on a bus leaving Baghdad yesterday.The attack brought the death toll in the Iraqi capital in the past three days to more than 60 as violence grows ahead of elections for a new government next week.

Police said the bomber, who wore an explosive vest, had jumped on to the bus as it was leaving a central station at the start of its journey to the southern city of Nasiriyah.A ball of flame engulfed the vehicle. Those on board, most of whom were families travelling to see relatives for the Muslim weekend today, were trapped inside.

Their charred bodies could be seen in the seats they had sat in. "As the bus was going outside the station a man tried to get on, but the conductor was suspicious about him," said Lt Wisam Hakim of the Iraqi police.

"He tried to stop him but the man insisted. He sat in the middle of the bus and then the explosion took place." The latest spate of bombings has refocused concern on Iraq's sectarian tensions. On Tuesday, 36 people died in an attack on Baghdad's police academy. Yesterday several blasts were heard across the capital and one US soldier died in a roadside bomb attack, reports the Telegraph. Photo: Reuters I.L.

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