Bombs’ victims are buried in Sadr City

The funerals have been held for the victims of Thursday’s bombings in Iraq's Sadr City. More than 200 people were killed in one of the worst series of attacks since the 2003 US-led invasion.

Police escorts accompanied convoys of minibuses carrying coffins, as mourners paraded through the streets. The country’s top government officials have held an emergency meeting and an indefinite curfew on Baghdad has been imposed. The explosions targeted a mainly Shiite neighbourhood of east Baghdad – a stronghold of anti-American cleric Muqtada Al Sadr.

It’s suspected that Sunni Arab militants were behind the blasts. In the immediate aftermath armed Shiite militia men and many angry residents filled the streets, cursing Sunni Muslims and firing weapons into the air. The bombings prompted an emergency meeting between a number of top Iraqi government leaders including the President, Prime Minister, Shiite leader and Sunni Vice President.

During a televised appeal for calm and restraint, Iraq’s Prime Minister Nouri Maliki called on the country to join together against such violence. “I hope that all of the political and popular groups will unite in order to protect all citizens from these criminals. And I call upon the security apparatus to protect the citizens, prevent an escalation, and limit internal strife.” he said.