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19 killed in Baghdad motorcycle market blast
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Death toll of a motorcycle bomb explosion in central Baghdad Friday morning has risen to 19, with at least 45 others wounded, a local police source said.

"Currently 19 people have been confirmed dead and at least 45 others wounded," the local police source told Xinhua by telephone on condition of anonymity, adding that blast scene had been cordoned off for investigation, and victims had been sent to the Kindy hospital about 500 meters nearby.

The blast occurred around 9:00 a.m. local time (0600 GMT) in the early morning when a motorcycle bomb exploded in a motorcycle market in Nahdha district of central Baghdad.

"People all know that these bazaars open on Friday, and 9:00 a. m. is supposed to be the rush hour, that's why they (the attackers) choose this time," the source said, underlining the reason of such high casualties.

Earlier, the source said at least nine people were killed and 25 others injured in the motorcycle market blast.

The explosion, one of a series of deadly blasts in the recent week, came just four days head of US combat troops are due to withdraw from Iraqi towns and cities, raising fears of a rebound of terrorist attacks at the time when Iraqi security forces finally struggle to stand on their own.

(Xinhua News Agency June 26, 2009)

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