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Suicide blast in Iraq kills 12 schoolchildren

A suicide bomber has attacked a primary school in northern Iraq, killing at least 12 children and their headteacher, police and medics say.

Another 90 people were injured in the attack near Tal Afar, some 420km north-west of the Iraqi capital Baghdad, the town’s mayor said.

At least 12 people were killed as another suicide bomber hit pilgrims heading to a Shia shrine in Baghdad.

Iraq has seen a sharp rise in sectarian violence in recent months. More than 50 people were killed on Saturday alone in Baghdad’s Adhamiya district as pilgrims walked to a Shia shrine.

Almost 1,000 people were killed in Iraq during the past month alone, the UN has said, amid fears of a return to the sectarian conflict that peaked in 2008.

Nearly 6,000 have been killed so far this year.

Violence rose after an army raid on a Sunni Arab anti-government protest camp in April.

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