At least 32 Iraqis were killed and 181 others wounded Wednesday (January 16th) when multiple blasts struck central and northern Iraq, officials said.
In central Kirkuk, two car bombs exploded simultaneously near the local headquarters of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) on Atlas Street, killing 21 people, including eight policemen, and wounding at least 145 others, said Kirkuk police spokesman Col. Salam al-Jaf.
In Salaheddine province, four civilians were killed and 30 others were wounded when a car rigged with explosives detonated near another local KDP headquarters in Tuz district, according to Salaheddine health directorate spokesman Dr. Ghanem al-Tarifi.
In Baghdad, seven civilians were killed and six others were wounded when four IEDs exploded in the neighbourhoods of al-Ameriya, al-Ghazaliya, al-Karrada and al-Dora, said Col. Hikmat Mahmoud al-Masari, director of media and communications in the Interior Ministry.
Al-Masari said al-Qaeda was behind the attacks, which he said were "aimed at provoking strife among Iraqis". Security forces declared a state of heightened alert and opened investigations into the attacks, he said.