More than 100 people are killed, and hundreds more wounded, in a string of bombings and shootings in Iraq.
Thee attacks, most of which were against Shia Muslim targets, left at least 107 dead and 268 wounded, officials said.
In Taji, 12 miles north of Baghdad, six blasts, including a car bomb, exploded near a housing complex. As police arrived a seventh bomb targeted a police vehicle, officials said.
In total 32 people were killed, including 14 police, and 48 were wounded in the Taji attacks.
Car-bombs also exploded at a government building in Sad’r City, a poor Shi-ite neighbourhood in Baghdad, and in the mainly Shi-ite area Hussainiya, killing 11 and wounding 73, police said.
Coming at the start of the holy month of Ramadan, a time of peaceful reflection and prayer, these attacks demonstrate an appalling disregard for human life. – William Hague
Five car bombs killed six people and wounded 17 in the northern oil-rich city of Kirkuk. Explosions and gun attacks on security checkpoints in different parts of the eastern province of Diyala killed six people, including four soldiers and a policemen.
Two car bombs parked near a military checkpoint killed five people and wounded 22 in the town of Khan Bani Saad, 20 miles northeast of Baghdad, police sources said.
Gunmen also killed four soldiers and wounded five in an attack on a checkpoint in the town of Udhaim, 56 miles north of the capital.
The attacks come the day after 20 people were killed in bombings in two towns to the south of Baghdad and in the city of Najaf, shattering a two-week lull in violence in the run up to the holy month of Ramadan.
Gyorgy Busztin, the UN secretary-general’s deputy special representative, condemned the attacks.
He said: “The scale and brutality of the attacks are appalling – especially now, when Iraqis are not only celebrating the holy month of Ramadan, with its messages of peace and reconciliation, but are also welcoming thousands of returnees who have fled the ongoing violence in Syria.”
Foreign secretary William Hague said the attacks showed an “appalling disregard for human life”.
“I utterly condemn the bomb attacks that have taken place across Iraq over the past few days,” he said. “I offer my deepest condolences to the families of those who lost their lives. My thoughts are with them and with the many who have been injured at this terrible time.
“Coming at the start of the holy month of Ramadan, a time of peaceful reflection and prayer, these attacks demonstrate an appalling disregard for human life. We will continue to support the government of Iraq in its efforts to defeat terrorism, and to provide security for all Iraqis.”
Last month at least 237 people were killed and 603 wounded in attacks – making it one of the bloodiest months this year.