An Iraqi police official says gunmen have attacked the house of a police officer near the northern oil-rich city of Kirkuk, killing one of his guards.
Kirkuk’s police commander Brig. Gen. Sarhad Qadir says the officer was unharmed in Saturday’s attack in the predominantly Sunni town of Hawija, a former insurgent stronghold located 150 miles (240 kilometers) north of Baghdad.
Suspected Sunni insurgents have frequently targeted Iraqi security forces to undermine the confidence in the Shiite-dominated government and its efforts to protect people from violence without American backup.
Attacks have surged amid an escalating political crisis in Iraq. At least 160 people have been killed since the beginning of the year, raising fears of civil war a month after U.S. soldiers left.