Friday prayers have been anything but peaceful in Iraq with violence claiming lives across the country. A sudden curfew was slapped on the capital after clashes broke out between Sunni insurgents and Shi’ite militias. North of Baghdad, at least 10 worshippers were killed in a bomb blast outside a Sunni mosque. It happened in Hibhib, the same village where a US air strike killed Iraq’s al Qaeda leader, Abu Musab al Zarqawi, earlier this month. Further south, a car bomb killed five people at a petrol station in Basra, according to hospital sources. Earlier, police said 10 died in the blast. Today’s casualty toll underscores the challenges Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki faces in easing violence that has pushed the country to the brink of civil war.