Deadly Iraq blasts wound Anbar governor
The governor of Iraq's Anbar province survived a suicide bomb attack, his deputy said, after state television reported the official had died.
Twin suicide bombs killed at least 24 and wounded more than 100 in western Iraq on Wednesday in an attack that appeared to target the governor of Anbar province and other senior officials.
Al-Iraqiya state television initially reported that Qassim Mohammed, governor of the Arab province west of Baghdad, was killed in the attacks near the provincial government headquarters in Ramadi, Anbar's provincial capital.
But Deputy Governor Hikmet Khalaf later said in a phone call to Reuters that Mohammed was still alive and had been flown to Baghdad for medical treatment.
Jassim Mohammed, who heads the Anbar provincial council, also said the governor was alive. State TV later ran a similar report from the provincial council head.
State TV also said a member of the provincial council and the deputy police commander had been killed in the blasts.
Police in Ramadi said the attacks took place in quick succession in the centre of the city, 100 km (60 miles) west of Baghdad. Many of those wounded were from Iraqi security forces.
Police Colonel Jabbar Ajaj said the first blast, in which a suicide bomber detonated explosives in a vehicle, was followed shortly afterwards by a second suicide attack, this time carried out by a bomber on foot.
A source at the hospital said that after the first attack took place, the governor came out from his nearby office to inspect the damage. Then the second attacker struck.
One of the attackers was a man working as a bodyguard for the governor, Iraqiya reported. Police said that Mohammed seemed to be the target of at least one of the attacks.
"I was walking towards some shops right next to the provincial government compound when a huge explosion happened. I flew through the air, and I woke up in the hospital," said Ahmed Mahmoud, a 30-year-old Ramadi resident.
Anbar was once the heart of Iraq's insurgency following the U.S.-led invasion.
Last Mod: 30 Aralık 2009, 16:06