At least 15 people have been killed and 30 others injured in a bomb attack targeting a funeral in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, officials say.
According to Iraqi sources, the bomb exploded near a crowd of mourners at a funeral in the Adhamiya district of north Baghdad on Monday. It is the third attack against Iraqi funerals in Baghdad over the past three days. On Sunday, at least 16 people were killed after a bomber detonated his explosive belt inside a tent where a funeral was being held in Baghdad's southern neighborhood of Dora. A day earlier, at least 73 people were killed in two blasts targeting mourners in Baghdad's Sadr City. Violence has surged across Iraq in recent months, reaching its highest level since 2008. Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki said in a statement released on Monday that attacks aimed to "reignite sectarian strife" and divide the country. Meanwhile, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said that the recent surge of violence in Iraq is directly linked to the crisis in the neighboring Syria. According to the United Nations, more than 5,000 people have been killed in acts of violence so far this year in Iraq, 800 of them in August alone with Baghdad Province worst hit. July was Iraq's deadliest month in five years with 1,057 people killed and 2,326 wounded in terrorist attacks. The Iraqi government says al-Qaeda-linked groups and members of the outlawed Ba’ath Party are behind the surge in terrorist attacks in the country.