Iraqi ministers escape assassination bombs

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Insurgents targeted convoys of the Iraqi interim government's ministers of environment and education in two separate bomb attacks in Baghdad today. Neither of the ministers was hurt, but at least five people were reported dead.

Insurgents targeted convoys of the Iraqi interim government's ministers of environment and education in two separate bomb attacks in Baghdad today. Neither of the ministers was hurt, but at least five people were reported dead.

In one of the attacks, a car bomb exploded in the southern Baghdad neighbourhood of Kadisea as Environment Minister Miskhat Moumin was passing through in a convoy, ministry spokesman Dalal Ali said. Moumin escaped unharmed. Four people were killed in that blast, however, said a police brigadier.

In a second attack around the same time in the western Baghdad district of al-Khadra, a roadside bomb exploded as a convoy of vehicles was headed to pick up Education Minister Sami Mudhafar. The education minister was not in the convoy at the time of the attack and was unharmed, the police brigadier said. The blast killed one of Mudhafar's bodyguards and wounded two others, he said.

In the Kadisea neighbourhood, Raed Jaffar, a 42-year-old resident, said the car bomb exploded about 100 meters yards from the main gate of Al-Huriya television, a Kurdish-language TV network.

"We heard a huge explosion," Jaffar said. "I saw two people injured and many dead bodies in the street."

Plumes of smoke rose into the sky from a charred vehicle at scene, and police and American soldiers cordoned off the area.

Hind Taleb, a well-known Iraqi actress, was also wounded in the Kadisea attack, according to Associated Press Television News footage.

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