UPDATE: A car bomb and an IED attack in a neighborhood in West Baghdad killed another two people and left 10 others wounded, a police source confirmed to ABC News. A separate attack in al-Shurta al-Rabiea injured three, according to police. Sixty-five people have now been killed and 206 injured in 14 attacks Thursday across Baghdad.
(BAGHDAD) — Iraq’s security forces on Thursday were put to their first real test since the last American troops exited the country earlier in the week when a series of coordinated bombings in Baghdad killed dozens of people and injured scores more.
As of early Thursday morning, at least 63 were reported dead and 185 others wounded, police told ABC News.
The attacks involved car bombs and improvised explosive devices (IEDs), and occurred virtually everywhere in the capital, from the Shuala and Shaab neighborhoods in the north to the Al-Amil and Dura areas in the south. Neighborhoods in central, eastern and western Baghdad were also targeted.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility, although the bombings were similar to others launched in the past by al Qaeda as well as Shiite and Sunni extremists.
Meanwhile, Iraq is currently undergoing a political crisis with an arrest warrant out for the country’s Sunni vice president and rumors that Shiite Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki is attempting a power grab to marginalize his Sunni opponents.
Thursday’s carnage could signal a renewed effort by anti-government militants to destabilize Iraq’s fragile democracy whose defense is now solely in the hands of national security forces.
Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio
Billy Hallowell, Deseret News
Catherine E. Shoichet, Max Blau and Steve Almasy, CNN
Holly Yan and Nadeem Muaddi, CNN
Ben Westcott, CNN