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Al-Qaida claims responsibility for N. Iraq attack

BAGHDAD (AP) – Al-Qaida in Iraq has claimed responsibility for an attack and hostage-taking that killed 57 people at a government building in northern Iraq.

The statement was released on the militants' Web site on Saturday. It five suicide bombers carried out the operation using a car bomb and explosive belts.

Gunmen wearing explosive belts under military uniforms charged into the provincial council building in Tikrit on Tuesday shooting hostages and setting off grenades throughout the building during the five-hour standoff.

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