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Iraq hit with more than 20 bombs, killing at least 36

Alaa Al-marjani / AP

An Iraqi policeman runs his metal detector over the coffin of Hussein Ahmed at a checkpoint as the body arrives for burial amid a sandstorm in the Shiite holy city of Najaf, 100 miles south of Baghdad, Iraq, on April 19. Ahmed was killed in Baghdad in one of a wave of morning bombings across several cities on Thursday, killing and injuring dozens of Iraqis, police said, shattering weeks of calm in a reminder of the nation's continued insurgency. The Arabic writing notes that the coffin was donated in memory of a family's dead relative.

AFP - Getty Images

Enveloped by a sand storm Iraqis clear the debris following two car bombs in the western city of Ramadi, in the Anbar province on April 19, as a wave of bombings and shootings across Iraq killed at least 35 people and wounded dozens more.

Reuters reports -- More than 20 bombs hit cities and towns across Iraq on Thursday, killing at least 36 and wounding almost 150, police and hospital sources said, raising fears of sectarian strife in a country whose authorities are keen to show they can now maintain security.

In Baghdad, three car bombs, two roadside bombs and one suicide car bomb hit mainly Shi'ite areas, killing 15 people and wounding 61, the sources said.

Two car bombs and three roadside bombs aimed at police and army patrols in the northern oil city of Kirkuk killed eight people and wounded 26, police and hospital sources said.

"I was trying to stop traffic to let a police patrol pass ...A car bomb exploded, I fell on the ground and police took me to the hospital," a policeman wounded in the face and chest told Reuters as doctors tended him. He declined to be named.

It was Iraq's bloodiest day since Al Qaeda's affiliate in the country, the Islamic State of Iraq group, killed at least 52 people with a series of 30 blasts on March 20.

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Ahmad al-Rubaye / AFP - Getty Images

An Iraqi boy inspects a car destroyed in a car bombing in Baghdad's Haifa Street, as dust creates a yellow haze across the city, on April 19. A wave of apparently coordinated bombing and shooting attacks in six different provinces across Iraq killed at least 37 people and wounded more than 150, security officials said.

Helmiy al-Azawi / Reuters

Residents inspect the site of a bomb attack in Baquba, 40 miles north of Baghdad, on April 19. More than 20 bombs hit cities and towns across Iraq on Thursday, killing at least 36 and wounding almost 150, police and hospital sources said, raising fears of sectarian strife in a country whose authorities are keen to show they can now maintain security.