KIRKUK / Aswat al-Iraq: The daily kidnapping and murdering operations in Kirkuk could not prevent locals from practicing their normal lives, as markets crowded with families until midnight in preparations for the feast of Eid el-Fitr.
“The Eid means happiness and joy, but we are in Kirkuk are waiting for it with hope and sorrow over the death of our beloved,” Ali Mustapha, 65, told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.
“We do not want to see blood or hear new bombings or armed attacks in Kirkuk during the eid,” he added.
“Security forces and Asayesch fighters have a great responsibility in keeping order and protect the city and civilians.”
Kamal Saad, another citizen, voiced concern over possible new attacks in the oil-rich city, saying “Kirkuk became recently a target and security violations have increased significantly.
They criminals are killing civilian with cold blood.”
For his part, Saman Salar, 43, who owns a supermarket in al-Hasier mall said “citizens flocked to Kirkuk markets in the past days to buy new clothes and other eid stuffs.”
“Nothing would prevent Kirkukians from practicing their normal life,” he added.
“I have been forced to stay to the late hours of the night due to huge number of customers who insisted to come to make their hair,” Nawal Mahmoud, 30, an owner of a beauty center, said.
“The center will remain opened on Thursday and Friday, and it is expected to be more crowded on Saturday,” she told Aswat al-Iraq news agency.
Jamal Kamal, a taxi driver, said “our fate is in god’s hands , and we have to get out every day depending on our god, asking for his mercy.”
He said he will take his children out during the eid to entertain them.
Double car bomb hit Kirkuk on Thursday, during which scores were killed or wounded.
The car bombs were around 300 metres apart.
The oil rich city of Kirkuk - 280 km north of the Iraqi capital - is home to a mix of ethnicities, mostly Kurds, Arabs and Turkmen.
The city is part of a dispute between Baghdad's Shi'ite led government and Kurdistan over who controls the territory and its vast crude oil reserves.