Security forces gather at the scene of a car bomb explosion in a shopping area in Karradah, Baghdad, Iraq, Tuesday, July 31, 2012. Iraqi officials say twin car bombings within five minutes of each other have killed and wounded scores of people. (AP Photo)
BAGHDAD (AP) – Two cars exploded within five minutes of each other Tuesday, killing 20 people and wounding 57 in an upscale Shiite neighborhood in Iraq's capital, officials said.Ramadan death count moves up to 1,196.
The afternoon's double blast sent plumes of black smoke over Karradah, a busy shopping district across the Tigris River from the Green Zone. The sounds of gunshots could be heard from blocks away.
The violence brought the July death toll to 244 people killed in shootings and bombings in al-Qaida attacks as the terror group seeks to take advantage of political instability in Iraq and move into areas it was forced out of before the U.S. military left the country last December.
Tuesday's explosions came in the middle of Baghdad's rush-hour as streets were clogged with people heading home from work.