Baghdad Bombs Claim 54

Reversal in trend of increasing security, as US announce troop reduction
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 6, 2008 2:31 PM CST
Khalil Kadim looks at his destroyed house in Arab Jabour, southern Baghdad, Iraq, Thursday, March 6, 2008. Kadim and his family returned to Arab Jabour Thursday after they were forced to flee sectarian...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Twin bomb blasts claimed 54 lives and wounded 130 in a Baghdad shopping center today, BBC News reports. Two roadside bombs timed to detonate within minutes of each other exploded in a shopping center in Karada district, leaving survivors holding body parts and searching for loved ones. Violence in Iraq has seen an upswing this month after a six-month decline generally attributed to the troop surge.

The blasts came on a day which was to see 2,000 US troops withdraw from the city, reports Reuters. Those soldiers will still return to the US, said a military spokesman, but "plans are fluid. (The military's intent) is not to give back any part of the city that our soldiers have paid a high price for," without lasting security gains.