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Iraqi officials say explosions in the nation's second largest city, Basra, have killed dozens of people, and wounded scores more.
Authorities say the explosions at a busy market were possibly triggered by a bomb, or a malfunctioning power generator. A security source adds that the death toll is 45, with 162 wounded, while a hospital source says 16 have died, with at least 110 wounded.
Witnesses say two or three explosions went off. Meanwhile, a suicide car bomber struck a police patrol west of Baghdad, killing eight people.
Despite the blasts, the top US commander in the country says Iraqi forces are ready to assume control of the country's security, as American forces handed over all combat duties this month.