Iraq warns that al-Qaida militants possess major firepower; bombings kill 28

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Associated Press

Posted on January 20, 2014 at 12:33 PM

Updated Monday, Jan 20 at 12:34 PM

BAGHDAD (AP) — An Iraqi official is warning that the al-Qaida-linked militants who have seized control of Fallujah (fuh-LOO'-juh) have amassed enough firepower to occupy Baghdad.

That assessment from Iraq's deputy interior minister comes amid a series of bombings in central Iraq today that have killed at least 28 people. Most of the bombings were in the capital. The deadliest blast hit an outdoor market south of Baghdad, killing seven people and wounding 13, while a bomb on a nearby street killed two more.

Meanwhile, the Iraqi army continues to press its offensive to retake Fallujah. Iraq's al-Qaida branch has taken over parts the city's center and parts of Ramadi, the capital of the largely Sunni western province of Anbar. The deputy interior minister (Adnan al-Asadi) describes the militants' arsenal as "huge and advanced," though he did not go into detail on the type of quantity of the weapons.

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APPHOTO BAG107: A gunmen takes cover during clashes with Iraqi security forces outside Fallujah, 40 miles (65 kilometers) west of Baghdad, Iraq, Sunday, Jan. 19, 2014. Violence across Iraq, including a series of car bombings and fighting between militants and government troops over control of the country's contested Anbar province, killed dozens Saturday, officials said. (AP Photo) (19 Jan 2014)

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APPHOTO BKM104: Civilians inspect the site of a car bomb attack at an outdoor market in Baghdad al-Jadidah district, Iraq, Monday, Jan. 20, 2014. A series of bombings in central Iraq killed dozens of people on Monday, as a government official claimed that al-Qaida-linked fighters have dug in to a city they seized last month and possess enough heavy weapons to storm into the country's capital. (AP Photo/Khalid Mohammed) (20 Jan 2014)

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APPHOTO BAG107: A gunmen takes cover during clashes with Iraqi security forces outside Fallujah, 40 miles (65 kilometers) west of Baghdad, Iraq, Sunday, Jan. 19, 2014. Violence across Iraq, including a series of car bombings and fighting between militants and government troops over control of the country's contested Anbar province, killed dozens Saturday, officials said. (AP Photo) (19 Jan 2014)

<<APPHOTO BAG107 (01/19/14)££

APPHOTO BAG112: Gunmen take cover during clashes with Iraqi security forces outside Fallujah, 40 miles (65 kilometers) west of Baghdad, Iraq, Sunday, Jan. 19, 2014. Violence across Iraq, including a series of car bombings and fighting between militants and government troops over control of the country's contested Anbar province, killed dozens Saturday, officials said. (AP Photo) (19 Jan 2014)

<<APPHOTO BAG112 (01/19/14)££

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