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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Blast Kills 25 in Iraq, 20 Found Beheaded

BAGHDAD -- A car bomb killed 25 people on Thursday at a busy intersection in Baghdad where minibuses pick up and drop off passengers, while 20 beheaded bodies were found on a riverbank south of the capital, Iraqi police said.

Another car bomb in Baghdad targeting motorists lining up for gasoline killed five people, police said. Mortar bombs also killed four people in two separate neighborhoods in the city.

In the southern city of Basra, a roadside bomb killed three British soldiers and seriously wounded another in the early hours of Thursday, the British military said.

The latest attacks underscore the strength of militants in Iraq despite the arrival of 28,000 additional U.S. troops. The unrelenting violence is pushing Iraq to the brink of all-out civil war between majority Shiites and minority Sunni Arabs.

The deadliest car bomb in Baghdad exploded in the Shiite district of Bayaa. The blast, which went off during the morning rush hour, wounded 40 people and destroyed dozens of vehicles. The Bayaa area in southwest Baghdad has been a frequent target of car bombs blamed on Sunni Islamist al-Qaida.

"It was a horrible explosion. Many, many people have been killed," said witness Aqeel Kadhim, saying pickup trucks and ambulances rushed to take away the dead and wounded.

The blast dug a huge crater where the minibuses parked.

In the Sunni Arab town of Salman Pak south of Baghdad, locals made the gruesome discovery of 20 beheaded men on the bank of the River Tigris, police said. All the victims were wearing civilian clothes and had their hands and legs bound, police said, adding some of the heads were missing. Police had no information on the possible motive or exactly where the men were from.