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Official raises Iranian death toll from Iraq blasts to 49

Iran's charge d'affaires in Baghdad on Thursday said that suicide bomb attacks earlier this week in Iraq had killed 49 Iranian pilgrims and wounded 115 others, IRNA reported.

"The identities of 25 martyrs of this event have been established, but the bodies of 12 martyrs without identification marks and 12 other martyrs whose bodies have been ripped apart, remain unidentified," Hassan Kazemi Qomi said.

The official said that no Iranian had been hurt in the explosion in Baghdad, meaning all the fatalities among Iranian pilgrims were related to a series of explosions in Karbala.

Qomi said he was hopeful all the bodies as well as those injured would be repatriated to Iran in the next 48 hours.

Iran, the official said, demands that the injured Iranians be transferred by air 'and therefore, we are ready for negotiations with the Iraqi and other (occupying) foreign sides to receive necessary permits'.

... Payvand News - 3/5/04 ... --

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