Iraq Church Attack Leaves Dozens Dead

More than taken 100 hostage in Baghdad yesterday
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Nov 1, 2010 8:45 AM CDT
The coffin of a victim is strapped onto a car outside Our Lady of Deliverance church the morning after its congregation was taken hostage in Baghdad, Iraq, Monday Nov. 1, 2010.   (AP Photo/Hadi Mizban)
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(Newser) – Dozens are dead and more than 50 wounded after militants took nearly 100 hostage in a Catholic church in Baghdad yesterday, prompting Iraqi anti-terrorist forces to storm the building. Officials say most of the injuries and deaths occurred after the kidnappers set off two suicide vests, the New York Times reports. “All the terrorists” were killed and several suspects were arrested, said the minister of defense, who defended the decision to intervene and called it a "successful operation."

Death toll figures vary from 37 to more than 50, the Christian Science Monitor notes. An unnamed government insider said police had nabbed eight gunmen with suspected ties to the Islamic State of Iraq, a Qaeda-linked group which claimed responsibility for the attack.“It’s a horrible scene. You can see human flesh everywhere,” said a policeman. The group linked the attack to the alleged detainment by an Egyptian church of two converts to Islam. The siege shines a light on the threat to Iraq's Christians, notes the Monitor, which notes that two-thirds of the country's Christians have fled their homes.

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