FALLUJA, Iraq, (Reuters) – Two suicide truck bombs targeting Iraqi police stations killed at least 15 people, wounded 147 others and levelled six houses in western Iraq on Thursday, police said.
The U.S. military said the attacks in different parts of the city of Falluja, 50 km (30 miles) west of Baghdad, bore the hallmarks of Sunni Islamist al Qaeda.
Police Captain Hammad al-Mohammedi told Reuters security forces had sealed off the city to traffic in response to the bombs, which exploded simultaneously outside the two stations.
Six policemen were amongst the dead, he said.
Violence has dropped sharply in Iraq over the past year, but car bombs, roadside bombs and other attacks occur daily. Falluja was once heart of a Sunni Arab insurgency against the Shi’ite-led government and U.S. forces.
Al Qaeda and other militants have since been largely overcome, but some still operate there.
“A complex attack, … it has all the signature elements of Al Qaeda,” Major-General David Perkins, spokesman for U.S. forces in Iraq, told Reuters in television interview.
“As they get more and more desperate, as they lose more and more freedom to manoeuvre they tend to go after … vulnerable aspects of society … that is what we have seen in Falluja.”