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Al Qaeda launches suicide bombing campaign in Iraq -uses website to boast of attacks

150 Iraqis killed after being lured to explosives van with promise of work
September 14, 2005

Iraq's Qaeda launches suicide bombing campaign web

Wed Sep 14, 2005

DUBAI (Reuters) - Iraq's al Qaeda said on Wednesday it was waging a nationwide suicide bombing campaign to avenge a military offensive on a rebel town as explosions in Baghdad killed at least 150 people.

Al Qaeda's statement was carried by an Islamist Web site often used by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi's Sunni militant group.

It did not mention any specific attack but most of those killed were Shi'ite Muslims.

"We would like to congratulate the Muslim nation and inform them the battle to avenge the Sunnis of Tal Afar has begun," said the statement, referring to the northern town being bombarded by U.S. and Iraqi forces.

"Our brigades have joyfully set off to uphold their religion through death ... we will inform you of the details of our operations in Baghdad and other parts of the country soon and we ask for your prayers," the statement added.

More than 200 insurgents have been killed and several hundred captured in Tal Afar, according to government reports.

Bombs have been exploding across Baghdad all day. In one explosion, 114 people were killed and 156 wounded when a suicide attacker lured Shi'ite labourers to his minivan and blew it up.

Iraqi government officials have accused Sunni Arab militants of attacking majority Shi'ites in a bid to spark a civil war.

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