BAGHDAD, (AP) – Two Shiite lawmakers say a senior member of anti-U.S. cleric Muqtada al-Sadr’s movement has died of wounds suffered in a roadside bombing in Baghdad.
Officials say Thursday’s explosion occurred as Saleh al-Auqaeili’s car passed about 200 yards (meters) away from an Iraqi army checkpoint in a heavily secured area near Baghdad’s main Shiite district of Sadr City.
Ahmed al-Massoudi, a spokesman for the Sadrist bloc, and Hassan al-Rubaie, another lawmaker who was at the hospital, confirmed that al-Auqaeili has died.
Al-Auqaeili is a senior member of al-Sadr political bloc, which has 30 seats in the 275-member parliament. The Shiite cleric’s cease-fire order to his militia has been a key factor in a sharp decline in violence over the past year.