Church leader: Worshippers not hurt by bombing

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Associated Press

Posted on December 25, 2013 at 2:04 PM

Updated Wednesday, Dec 25 at 2:04 PM

BAGHDAD (AP) — The leader of a Catholic church in Iraq says the car bomb that went off near the church in Baghdad today exploded after Christmas Mass, and that none of the worshippers was hurt. He also says he doesn't think the church was the target.

Police say the bomb killed at least 26 people and wounded more than three dozen others. It was among three that went off today in Christian areas of the capital, killing at least 37 people.

There's been no claim of responsibility for the attacks. Iraq's Christians have often been targeted by al-Qaida and other insurgents.

The Christmas Day attacks brought the total number of people killed so far this month in Iraq to 441. According to U.N. estimates, more than 8,000 people have been killed since the start of the year.

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APPHOTO XKK101: Iraqi police officers guard the entrance of St. Joseph's Chaldean Church before a Christmas mass in Baghdad, Iraq, Wednesday, Dec. 25, 2013. Militants on Wednesday launched two separate attacks against Christians in Baghdad, officials said. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attacks, but Iraq's dwindling Christian community, which is estimated to number about 400,000 to 600,000 people, has often been targeted by al-Qaida and other insurgents who see the Christians as unbelievers.(AP Photo/Karim Kadim) (25 Dec 2013)

<<APPHOTO XKK101 (12/25/13)££

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