Drugged Female Would-Be Suicide Bomber Surrenders (Iraq)

A teenage girl wearing an explosive suicide vest surrendered to police in the Iraqi city of Baqouba rather than detonating the device, according to video pictures released yesterday. The girl, who gave her name as Rania and said she was born in 1993, was shown handcuffed to a metal frame as officers tried to cut away the bomb hidden under layers of floral-decorated robes.

She appeared dazed as officers covered her bare shoulders with a jacket. One policeman suggested she had been drugged before being sent on the mission on Sunday.

The film recorded an officer pulling out a wire before removing the vest. It was reportedly packed with 33lb of explosives in six compartments.

Police said she was fitted with the explosives by female relatives of her husband, whom she married five months ago. An Iraqi police officer claimed the girl’s family was known for supporting al-Qaida in Iraq and that her father had carried out a suicide bombing. She was detained by police.

Women have been used increasingly in suicide attacks in Iraq. The number of female bombers has more than tripled, from eight in 2007 to 29 this year, according to US military officials.

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Suicide Bomber Kills Soldiers and Child (Afghanistan)

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A suicide bomber blew himself up as an Afghan army convoy slowed to pass a pothole-riddled section of road Friday in eastern Afghanistan, killing four soldiers and a child, a defense official said.

Four other soldiers were wounded in the attack, about eight miles west of Khost city, said Defense Ministry spokesman Zahir Azimi.

Suicide bombers frequently target military convoys, but civilian passers-by are often killed in such attacks.

Insurgency related violence has killed more than 1,200 people — mostly militants — so far this year, according to an Associated Press tally of figures from Western and Afghan officials.

In eastern Kunar province, meanwhile, deputy police chief Abdul Sabor Allayer said a rocket hit a schoolyard on Wednesday in Asmor district, killing one student and wounding four others. The victims were between eight and 14 years old.

Afghanistan’s Education Minister said earlier this year that the number of students and teachers killed in Taliban attacks spiked in the past year in a campaign to close schools and force teenage boys to join the Islamic militia. UNICEF says 236 school-related attacks occurred last year.