In Iraq, a suicide truck bomber has killed at least 50 people and left up to 150 others injured. The victims were targeted as they left a Shi’ite mosque in northern Kirkuk after noon prayers. Dozens of small clay homes in the area were flattened by the explosion.
With scores of people feared trapped under the rubble, the death toll is expected to rise. The blast came just hours after Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki urged Iraqis not to lose faith if a US military pullback resulted in more insurgent attacks. Such attacks, including a string of devastating bombings in April, have cast doubt on the ability of Iraqi security forces to take over after US troops leave at the end of the month.