Five Iraqi Churches Attacked in Bombings

( [email protected] ) Aug 02, 2004 03:51 PM EDT

In the first postwar attack on the nation's Christian minority, terrorists targeted four churches in the Iraqi capital and one in the northern city of Mosul yesterday. Bombs exploded outside a church during a Sunday evening service in central Baghdad, killing at least 11 and injuring hundreds, according to witnesses.

In Baghdad, according to eye witness accounts car bombs exploded outside the Armenian Church, not far the Chaldean Rite Catholic Cathedral of St. Joseph, the Mar Eliya (St Elijah) of Heyra Church in Hay al-Amin in New Baghdad, the Syriac-Catholic Church of Our Lady of Salvation and finally the Chaldean Church of the Disciples Mar Putros and Mar Polos (Sts Peter and Paul) near the Chaldean Catholic Seminary in al-Dura.

At roughly the same time, a car bomb and grenade attack hit the Chaldean Church of St Paul in Mosul, about 220 miles north of Baghdad. The car bomb placed near a power generator killed one person wounding 50. The explosion took place at 7 pm local time (4 pm GMT).

The Russian Orthodox Church said the attacks were an attempt to spark a religious conflict.