Iraq sacks security chiefs as new bombing kills 40

The three are the latest heads to roll in the security services following last weekend's auto bombing in the city's Karada districtthat killed nearly 300 people and a suicide attack on a Shia shrine on Thursday night that left at least 30 dead.

Iraqi firefighters and civilians carry bodies of victims killed in a truck bomb at a commercial area in Karada neighbourhood, Baghdad.

The attack late on Thursday targeted the shrine of Imam al-Sayed Mohammed bin Ali in the town of Balad, around 80 kilometres north of the capital Baghdad.

Many people were pinned under the rubble, some for days, with the initial reports suggesting only scores killed.

Three men wearing suicide vests then tried to storm the shrine, before security forces opened fire.

IS claimed responsibility for the shrine attack in a statement posted online.

Sunday's bombing occurred when a suicide bomber blew up a minibus packed with explosives in a Baghdad shopping district teeming with people ahead of the Eid al-Fitr holiday, sparking widespread anger against the government. Another suicide attack yesterday killed at least 26.

The former IS stronghold, west of the capital, was retaken in June, after the Islamic State group had held the city for over two years.

Anger against the government is running high after the vehicle bombing last Sunday that killed at least 292 people.

Shi'ites form a majority in Iraq but Sunnis are predominant in northern and western provinces, including Salahuddin where the mausoleum is located.

Al-Abadi fired the commander of Baghdad Operations, a statement from his office said earlier Friday.

Those protests paused during Ramadan, but spontaneous demonstrations have followed the Baghdad bombing.

"The sacking of the Baghdad Operations Commander was due to accumulated mistakes that can not be overlooked", said one senior security official quoted by the news service.

The UK on Wednesday published an inquiry into the invasion of Iraq, which heavily criticised former Prime Minister Tony Blair and various government institutions.

The premier sacked the local commander of military operations, national security adviser and head of interior ministry intelligence for the capital after the deadly attack caused outrage at the inadequacy of emergency services and the security apparatus.

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