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Baghdad Car Bomb Kills at Least 40 Civilians, Police Report

American Forces Press Service

BAGHDAD, Iraq, July 24, 2005 – Iraqi police say at least 40 Iraqi civilians were killed and more than two dozen others were wounded today when a car bomb exploded at a market area near the front gate of the Al-Rashid police station here, military officials reported.

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Iraqi security forces assess damage from a vehicle bomb detonated at the front gate of the Al-Rashid police station July 24. Police report that at least 40 Iraqi civilians were killed in the attack, and that dozens more were wounded. Army photo

(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.

Iraqi Police and Army units secured the station after the mid-afternoon attack, officials said.

An explosive ordnance disposal team on the site reported the suicide bomber used a semi truck loaded with 500 pounds of explosives. The blast also destroyed 18 Iraqi citizens' vehicles and damaged the police station and neighboring houses.

The commander of coalition forces in eastern Baghdad noted that the response of Iraqis the wake of the attack demonstrates their resolve to stand firm against the terrorists in their communities.

"The resolve of the Iraqi security forces remains firm," said Army Col. Joseph DiSalvo. "In the face of a horrific crime, the ISF is here to care for the wounded, console the grieving and evacuate the dead. The terrorists do everything they can to destroy the people, but the ISF and the Iraqi government is here to help. It is the responsibility of all Iraqis to turn in the terrorists.

"Most importantly," the colonel continued, "I saw numerous Iraqi civilians join the ISF at the scene to provide as much aid as they could. They carried Iraqi dead away to the chant 'Allah, Akbar! Allah, Akbar! (God is great!).' It is clear to me the people know who their enemy is, and their resolve will never be shaken."

DiSalvo said an Iraqi man expressed resolve against the terrorists and hope for his country's future. "The more devils that disappear, the easier it is for the angels," the Iraqi man told the colonel.

"This is my community," a police officer who lives near the station said. "The terrorists have killed my friends and my neighbors. Why do the terrorists kill our people? We only want peace."

(From a Task Force Baghdad news release.)

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