Middle East

Iraq violence: Baghdad mosque suicide bomb kills 15

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At least 15 people have died in a suicide bomb attack targeting a Shia mosque in the Iraqi capital Baghdad, officials say.

More than 30 people were wounded in the attack, which happened during night prayers, AP news agency reported.

More than 2,500 Iraqis have died in violent attacks since April, according to UN figures released this week.

On Monday a suicide bomber targeted a Shia mosque in Muqdadiyah, 50 miles (80 km) north-east of Baghdad, killing 22.

Iraq has been suffering its worst sectarian violence in several years, with May the bloodiest month since June 2008, according to UN figures.

The recent surge in violence comes amid heightened tensions between Iraq's Sunni and Shia communities, amid claims by the Sunnis that they are being marginalised by Prime Minister Nouri Maliki's Shia-led government.

Violence erupted in April when Iraqi security forces stormed an anti-government Sunni protest in the city of Hawija, killing and wounding dozens of protesters.

Although the violence is less deadly than that seen during the heights of the insurgency in 2006 and 2007, it is the most widespread since the US military withdrawal in 2011.