MOSUL, Iraq (Reuters) – Eleven Iraqi soldiers were killed on Friday in a roadside bomb disposal accident in northern Iraq, Iraqi security officials said.
The bomb disposal unit was trying to detonate a number of bombs in a vacant area in Bashika, east of the city of Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of Baghdad, when the explosion took place, a senior police source said on condition of anonymity.
Ethnically and religiously mixed Mosul remains one of Iraq’s most violent cities as the insurgent and sectarian violence unleashed by the U.S.-led invasion in 2003 fades across most of the country and U.S. forces prepare to withdraw by 2012.
Home to a volatile mix of Sunni Arabs, ethnic Kurds and other minorities, Mosul is plagued by assassinations, roadside bombs and attacks against Iraqi security forces.
(Editing by Robin Pomeroy)