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Baghdad bombings toll reaches 250

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BAGHDAD — The death toll from a massive suicide bombing in Baghdad over the weekend has reached 250, Iraq’s Health Ministry says.

The attack, claimed by Islamic State aggressors (IS), was the deadliest of the many car bombings in Baghdad since the 2003 US-led invasion.

The suicide car bombing ripped through Baghdad’s Karrada district early on Sunday when it was teeming with shoppers ahead of the holiday marking the end of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, sparking infernos in nearby buildings.

Iraq’s interior minister submitted his resignation on Tuesday as authorities sought to contain the public’s anger about the bombing.

“I placed my resignation before the Prime Minister,” Mohammed Ghabban told a news conference, though it was unclear if it would be accepted, and he may yet stay in office.

Mr Ghabban said the explosives-rigged truck came from Diyala province, north of Baghdad, meaning it likely successfully navigated a security checkpoint on the way into the capital.

He described as “absolutely useless” the checkpoints that are littered throughout capital, which have long been a pillar of Government efforts to secure the city.

Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi announced changes to security measures following the blast, including scrapping the fake bomb detectors that were still in use years after the man who sold them to Iraq was jailed for fraud in Britain.

Authorities also hailed the arrest of 40 jihadists who were said to be connected to planned attacks, while the Justice Ministry announced the execution of five convicts, linking the timing to the Baghdad blast.

Agencies

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Nirmala Panta rape, murder case : Locals protest after wrong suspect paraded

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BHIMDUTTANAGAR — Locals who were protesting against the rape and murder of Nirmala Panta of Kanchanpur’s Bhimdatta Municipality, have enforced shutdown in Bhimduttanagar Bazaar on Tuesday, protesting police’s failure to reveal facts behind the murder of 13-year-old girl and parading wrong suspect on Monday.

The District Police Office, organising a press conference on Monday,had made public Dilip Singh Bista (41), of Baghphanta, Bhimdatta Municipality-19 as Nirmala’s murderer.

Locals have shut down the market area stating that police were not being able to make public the true murderer(s) as they are not convinced by the findings of police citing that Bista was mentally unsound, according to the District Police Office.

Transportation has also been halted.

Bista, a resident of Khanna Chauraha area in Bhimdutta Municipality-19, was apprehended near the scene of crime on Sunday, according to police.

Police making public the wrong suspect has infuriated the locals and fueled the protest.

The agitators including various civil society organisations and human rights defenders have been picketing the District Administration Office and staging rally on the street mounting pressure on the police to reveal the facts behind the heinous crime.

Meanwhile, it had been learnt that police have fired rounds of teargas shells to contain the agitated mob.

Nirmala was found murdered in a sugarcane field on July 27, a day after she had gone to her friend’s home to get a notebook.

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