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Iraq: Suicide truck bombing kills dozens

  • Story Highlights
  • NEW: Toll of wounded reaches at least 200; many of the injuries are critical
  • Search for bodies continues hours after year's deadliest attack
  • Bomb exploded about 1 p.m. in the town of Taza, southwest of Kirkuk
  • Town is predominantly inhabited by Shiite Turkmen
From Mohammed Tawfeeq
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BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- A suicide truck bombing near a Shiite mosque killed at least 67 people and wounded at least 200 Saturday in a city close to Kirkuk, Iraq, an official with Kirkuk police said.

The explosion occurred in a busy area near the Rasoul mosque, police said, and a number of people were trapped under rubble.

Police said at least 25 houses and shops were destroyed in the attack, the deadliest this year.

The blast took place about 1 p.m. in the town of Taza, about 10 miles southwest of Kirkuk and 149 miles north of Baghdad. Taza is predominantly inhabited by Shiite Turkmen.

Hours after the blast, authorities were still digging through rubble searching for possible survivors and more bodies.

A number of the wounded were taken to hospitals in the cities of Sulaimaniya and Irbil, in Iraq's Kurdish region. Many of the wounded were in critical condition, hospital officials said.

Last week, Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki warned of increased political violence in the country, mentioning a deadly bombing on June 10 in the southern town of Bathaa that killed more than 30 people and injured dozens.

He said there will be attempts to undermine Iraqi security forces as U.S. troops complete their withdrawal from Iraq by the end of the month and ahead of upcoming national elections.

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