BAGHDAD (AP) — Gunmen killed the entire family of an anti-terrorist policeman in Baghdad and a Sunni cleric in the Shiite-majority south on Saturday, part of a wave of attacks across Iraq that left eight dead, said officials.
The attacks follow three days of bombings and other violence across the country that killed 130 people. A market, a mosque and bus stops in both Shiite and Sunnis areas were targeted in scenes reminiscent of the retaliatory attacks between the two groups that pushed the country to the brink of civil war in 2006-2007.
The recent spike of violence has raised fears that the country might be heading to a new round of sectarian violence.
Saturday's deadliest attack occurred when gunmen broke into the house of an anti-terrorism police officer in the southern suburbs of Baghdad, killing five people including him and his sleeping family. Police officials say the attackers stormed the house in the al-Rasheed district early Saturday and shot dead Cap. Adnan Ibrahim, his wife and two children, aged eight and 10.
As they were leaving the area, the attackers killed another policeman who tried to stop them at a nearby checkpoint.
In the southern city of Basra, gunmen shot and killed a Sunni cleric, Assad Nassir, as he was leaving his house, said police.
Also, two Iraqi soldiers were killed and two others wounded when a roadside bomb struck a group of soldier who arrived to inspect the scene of a blast that took place earlier in the northern city of Mosul.
Health officials confirmed the death tolls. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to talk to the media.