Counting of Votes Begins in Iraq

Election officials in Iraq are reported to have begun counting votes following the country’s second full parliamentary election since the US-led invasion in 2003.

A curfew has been clamped in Baghdad, after the polls closed on Sunday to ensure safe transportation of the ballots from election centres to the election commission’s main counting offices.

Millions of people turned out to cast their ballots across the country that saw over 6,000 candidates from 86 political groups contest for the 325-member assembly.

The vote, however, was marred by violence as a series of explosions left at least 38 people dead and 89 others wounded in Baghdad.

The worst casualties on the day -25 – were reported from an explosion in the Shaab district of northern Baghdad, which destroyed a residential building.

Correspondents in Baghdad say that the vote was cast amid a series of mortar attacks and blasts from improvised explosive devices.

Based on media reports

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