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Police killed in Baghdad bank raid

A gang using bombs and automatic weapons tried to storm a bank in Baghdad in a failed robbery attempt that left three people dead, including two policemen, officials said.

Police said the assault began with four bombs exploding near the state-run Al-Rafidain bank in south-western Baghdad and in the ensuing gun battle two policemen and a bystander were shot dead.

Two of the robbers were captured. Police and hospital officials said a total of six people were wounded, including three policemen.

Military spokesman Major General Qassim al-Moussawi said it was unclear whether the gang had political links or was purely criminal.

Baghdad has been hit recently by a wave of attacks on security officials and government workers as well as a number of high profile bank robberies.

The security officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to brief media.

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