Seven blasts rocked a number of residential neighbourhoods in Baghdad on Tuesday (April 6th), sparking an overwhelming wave of anger among Iraqi citizens against the perpetrators.
According to Gen. Qassim Atta, spokesperson for Baghdad Operations Command, 41 Iraqis were killed and more than 150 were wounded.
"The death toll, however, could rise because there may be victims under the rubble of the residential buildings that collapsed," he added.
"The terrorist attacks carry the fingerprints of al-Qaeda and the Saddam alliance. It is a diabolic, Baathist, takfirist alliance that takes advantage of Iraqis' preoccupation with the political process to carry out these attacks," he added.
"Terrorism and murderers have shown their ugly faces after years of lying slogans and false speeches," said Feras Haidar, 22, a resident of al-Shuala, which was targeted in Tuesday's bombings. "They have taken off the mask of piety and revealed their true face, the face of murder, terrorism, and blood."
"These bombings are only targeting civilians in residential neighbourhoods where only poor people live," Haidar added. "We will not forgive them, and we call on the state to hit them with an iron fist, and we will be with it in its mission to eliminate them."
Lt. Col. Nassir Abdullah of Baghdad Operations Command said the first bombing took place at 9 a.m. at 60th Street in al-Shuala neighbourhood and caused a residential building to collapse. A second bomb exploded shortly afterwards near Qamar bin Hashim in the area of Chkook, also in al-Shuala. That blast caused two residential buildings to fall, one with commercial shops.
According to Abdullah, two more blasts took place less than one hour later. One exploded near the headquarters of Amanat Baghdad in central Baghdad, taking down another residential building. The other blast took place in al-Shurta al-Rabiaa neighbourhood in southern Baghdad, causing another residential building to collapse.
The fifth blast took place near a residential building in al-Amel neighbourhood, also in southern Baghdad. The explosion caused the residential building to collapse, destroyed a number of adjacent houses, and burned cars in the area.
The sixth blast targeted another residential building in al-Ilam neighbourhood in south-western Baghdad, and resulted in the collapse of the building in full.
Car bombs were used in the first six bombings, but the seventh blast came from a sticky bomb that targeted a civilian vehicle in al-Dorra.
"All these attacks were targeting civilians, as there are no security forces near them at all," Abdullah added. "This is what the terrorist groups are doing in an attempt to sow panic among Iraqis."
Meanwhile, Alaa al-Taey, spokesperson for the Interior Ministry, said security forces managed to thwart four similar attacks against civilian targets in Chkook. Security personnel searched the buildings near the scene of the earlier blast in Chkook and managed to seize four containers and explosives that were set to detonate.
"We have positive indications that al-Qaeda is targeting civilians in residential areas and markets after they failed to confront the Iraqi security forces," al-Taey added.
Thamir Hasan, a 43-year-old resident of al-Shuala, was clearly devastated by the explosions.
"I do not know what to say, but you just have to see the body parts of victims under the rubble and blood dripping down from the ceilings of the collapsed buildings," he said.
Hasan owns a store in the area of the attacks. "There are three children who come to buy sweets every morning, but they did not come today. When I asked about them, I found out that they were under the rubble."
"Woe to them, God damn those monstrous, bastard murderers," Hasan said, wiping tears from his eyes. "Even the children were not spared. I will quit my work in the store and join the security forces in order to exact revenge on them."
In other security news, Col. Waleed al-Karkhi of the Iraqi Army's 3rd Division said that Iraqi soldiers risked their lives to prevent a suicide car bomb attack targeting a crowd of citizens west of the capital.
"A Toyota car bomb driven by a suicide bomber and carrying more than 1,000 kilograms of explosives was stopped and the suicide bomber was arrested before he could blow himself up," al-Karkhi said.
"This has been a really heroic operation by Iraqi soldiers," he added.
"Today's bombings prove the theory that terrorism and Iraqis cannot live in one country or one place," said Lamees Fadhil, 29. "We have to be one hand in order to get rid of terrorism and expel it from our country."