September 11th, 2013
01:22 PM ET

Suicide bomber kills 4 at Baghdad mosque, police say

At least four people were killed and 12 were wounded Wednesday in Baghdad when a suicide bomber blew himself up near worshipers at a Shiite mosque, police said.

The bomber wore an explosive vest, which he detonated Wednesday evening outside the mosque in the northwestern al-Kassra neighborhood, police officials told CNN.

Iraq has seen a sharp increase in friction between its Shiite and Sunni populations since April, when Iraqi security forces raided a site used by Sunni protesters to demonstrate against the Shiite-led government.

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Filed under: Iraq • Iraq War
September 4th, 2013
05:51 PM ET

Attackers kill 10 family members in Iraq

Twenty people were killed in violence south of Baghdad and in Mosul on Wednesday, including 10 members of the same family, police officials said.

Gunmen in Latifiya, south of the capital, stormed the family's home at dawn, and opened fire, killing two mothers, two fathers and their children, the officials said.

Police reported three attacks in Mosul.

The deadliest involved a suicide bomber who blew himself up at a police station, killing five officers, the officials said.

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Filed under: Iraq War
September 3rd, 2013
01:20 PM ET

27 slain in Baghdad bombings

At least 27 people were killed and more than 50 others were wounded Tuesday when nine car bombs exploded in largely Shiite areas in the Iraqi capital of Baghdad, police said.

The attacks unfolded within an hour shortly before sunset, police said. The explosions took place in Karrada, al-Alam, Talbiya, Abu Dsheer, Al-Maamil, Zafaraniya, al-Shurta Rabaa and Skaniya, police said.

The deadliest attack was in al-Shurta Rabaa, in southwestern Baghdad when a car bomb in a busy shopping area killed six people and wounded 12 others.

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Filed under: Iraq War
U.N.: Chemical weapons use must be punished
August 26th, 2013
01:35 AM ET

U.N.: Chemical weapons use must be punished

The use chemical weapons is a crime against humanity and must be punished, United Nations chief Ban Ki-Moon told journalists Monday in Seoul, South Korea.

Washington may be preparing to take on the role of the punisher, if reports the Syrian government used poison gas against civilians are verified.

U.N. inspectors on the ground in Syria may be close to doing that.

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Filed under: Arab Spring • CNN Inside Syria • Iraq War • Military • Pentagon • Russia • Syria • U.S. Navy • War • World • World Update
Islamists claim Iraq anniversary attacks
March 20th, 2013
04:54 AM ET

Islamists claim Iraq anniversary attacks

An al-Qaeda affiliate claimed responsibility Wednesday for a chain of 24 bombings and two gun attacks in Iraq a day earlier, as the death toll rose to 61.

A statement attributed to the Islamic State of Iraq appeared on extremist websites, calling Tuesday's carnage "retaliation" against Shiite members in government.

Though Iraq has grown safer in the last six years, sectarian violence and instability still grip the country 10 years after the start of the U.S.-led war.

March 19th, 2013
02:52 AM ET

Spate of attacks kills 18 in Iraq

Car bombs and roadside explosions killed at least 18 people within a one-hour period in and around Baghdad on Tuesday, authorities said.

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Filed under: Iraq War • World
March 11th, 2013
12:04 AM ET

Iraq still grapples with human rights abuses

Ten years after the fall of Saddam Hussein, Iraq remains "enmeshed in a grim cycle of human rights abuses," Amnesty International said in a report Monday.

"Many Iraqis today enjoy greater freedoms than they did under his Ba'athist regime, but the fundamental human rights gains that should have been achieved during the past decade have signally failed to materialize," said Hassiba Hadj Sahraoui, Middle East and North Africa deputy director at Amnesty International.

The report said government forces commit torture with impunity, targeting particularly those arrested on suspicion of carrying out terrorism acts.

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Filed under: Iraq War • World
November 6th, 2012
05:01 AM ET

Car bomb kills Iraqi soldiers, recruits near army base

[Update 5:50 a.m. ET] The car bomb exploded outside a recruiting center about 20 kilometers (12 miles) north of Baghdad.   Four of the dead were soldiers, but most were recruits, police officials said.

[Update 5:40 a.m. ET] Baghdad police officials have upped the death toll from the attack to at least 26 people.  Another 30 have been wounded.

[Posted at 5:01 a.m. ET] Three Iraqi soldiers were killed and 11 others were wounded today when a car bomb exploded near an Iraqi army base in an area with many Sunni and Shiite residents, police officials said.


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Filed under: Iraq • Iraq War • Terrorism • World • World Update
Gotta Watch: Military homecomings
A father and son hug after dad returns home in 2011.
May 27th, 2012
09:46 AM ET

Gotta Watch: Military homecomings

On Memorial Day this Monday, the United States will remember troops who died serving their country. The holiday originally started in Waterloo in 1866 to honor those who died in the Civil War.

The last U.S. troops withdrew from Iraq in December. Just days ago, NATO agreed on a withdrawal of U.S.-led international military forces from Afghanistan by 2014. In honor of the contributions that U.S. troops have made to the country, watch some of our favorite military homecomings.


Welcome home

Military homecomings bring out lots of feelings among family members. This compilation of reunions will tug at your heartstrings. Which one is your favorite?


School surprise

When a soldier returns after being in Iraq, he shows up at his children’s elementary school to surprise them. See the son’s emotional reaction at :25 and the daughter’s response at 1:20.


Walking to dad

A boy with cerebral palsy was told that he wouldn’t walk, but he surprises his Marine dad by walking to him at his homecoming. The son had been working on it for months, but the family kept the new ability a secret from his dad.


Canine love

Humans aren’t the only ones who miss military members while they’re away. Watch how macho soldiers are reduced to baby talk with their dogs.

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Filed under: Gotta Watch • Iraq War • Marines • Military
Open thread: Who are you honoring this weekend?
May 26th, 2012
02:00 AM ET

Open thread: Who are you honoring this weekend?

As the country heads into the Memorial Day weekend, the traditional kickoff to the summer travel season, there are almost 1.5 million U.S soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines deployed in war zones or combat missions worldwide.

So far, more than 6,400 U.S. servicemen and servicewomen have died in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan - 3,000 in Afghanistan alone - and at least 48,000 more have been wounded.

We encourage you to spend some time looking at our Home and Away feature, where you can discover the individual stories of the fallen.

Do you have a friend or family member in service? Tell in the comments who you are honoring this weekend.

Filed under: Iraq War • Military
April 8th, 2012
01:04 AM ET

Videos appear to show top Saddam official ripping Iraq's current leaders

A series of videos appeared online Saturday purporting to show Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri, the highest-ranking member of Saddam Hussein's regime to evade capture, deriding Iraq's current leadership.

Al-Douri, who the U.S. military says helped finance the Sunni insurgency in Iraq, was the "king of clubs" in a deck of playing cards used by American troops following the 2003 invasion to identify the most-wanted regime officials.

There have been several claims over the years that al-Douri was either killed or captured, though a man claiming to be al-Douri has released a number of audio messages over the years taunting Iraqi and U.S. officials.

Al-Douri, who served as a military commander and vice president in Hussein's Sunni-dominated regime, was last seen on video shortly after the invasion of Iraq.

CNN cannot independently verify the authenticity of the videos posted on YouTube Saturday or the identity of the man, though he bears a striking resemblance to al-Douri.

In the clips, the man who claims to be al-Douri is wears an olive military uniform and sits behind a desk with an Iraqi flag in the background.

He derides Iraq's Shiite-dominated government, led by Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, as well as what he describes as meddling by neighboring Iran. Al-Maliki's Dawa party, says al-Douri, "has announced Iraq as the Shiite capital."

He said nine years have passed since the invasion and Iraq is still in peril.

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Filed under: Iraq War • World