At least 22 people are dead after a series of explosions that tore through central Baghdad today within minutes of each other, followed by an assault by gunmen on a government building. More than 50 others have been hurt.
The gunmen battled security forces in the streets for about an hour. In the end, police say, security forces stormed the building that was attacked, killing the gunmen and evacuating hundreds of people who had hunkered down in their offices.
There's no claim of responsibility, but the attack bore the hallmarks of al-Qaida's arm in Iraq. It frequently uses car bombs and coordinated blasts in an effort to weaken the confidence of Iraqis in the Shiite-led government.
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