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Last Updated: Sunday, 28 October 2007, 18:43 GMT
Car bomb targets Iraqi oil city
Injured people are removed from the scene of the Kirkuk blast, 28 October 2007
The mixed city of Kirkuk is no stranger to devastating bomb attacks
A suicide car bomb has exploded at a bus terminus in the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk, killing at least eight people and injuring more than 20.

The blast, which happened in a mainly Kurdish area of the city, set cars and shops on fire and sent a plume of black smoke across the city, witnesses said.

The city of about 250,000 people is home to Kurds, Arabs and Turkmens.

In Baghdad, gunmen abducted nine tribal leaders who recently formed a mixed Shia and Sunni group to fight al-Qaeda.

Travellers to Iraq's Kurdish region use the terminus targeted in Kirkuk.

The oil-rich city lies outside the Kurdish-controlled region but Kurds are seeking to win power in a referendum promised by the end of the year.

Map
The men seized in Baghdad had been on their way home to Diyala province after a meeting with a government official.

They are members of one of a number of local councils which have been working with the Iraqi government and the Americans to try to expel al-Qaeda fighters.

A tenth man with them, said by police to be a senior religious figure in the province, was also taken.

There was no immediate word on the identity of the gunmen, but the kidnap took place in a mainly Shia district, Shaab, where Iraqi officials say militiamen have a strong presence.

According to an unconfirmed report by Reuters news agency, one of those abducted was shot while trying to resist the gunmen. His condition is not known.

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