BAQOUBA, Iraq, AP – A suicide bomber set off his explosives in the middle of a funeral procession Wednesday, killing at least 30 people, police and a hospital official said.
More than 100 mourners were standing in a cemetery for the burial of a nephew of the director of the Muqdadiyah hospital when the explosion went off, leaving tombstones stained with blood, police said.
Thirty-six people were wounded along with the 30 killed, said Firas al-Nida, a doctor at hospital. Muqdadiyah is about 60 miles north of Baghdad.
The director of the hospital had survived an assassination attempt on Tuesday, when his nephew was fatally wounded.
The director is also the head of the local al-Dawa party, a junior partner in the country’s largest Shiite political coalition, the United Iraqi Alliance, police said.
Iraqi Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari is the head of the Dawa party.
Police Lt. Salam Hussine said the bombing was aimed at igniting a Shiite-Sunni civil war.
Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the extremist Sunni leader of the terrorist organization al-Qaida in Iraq, has made Shiites his chief target.