updated 1/15/2007 11:42:26 AM ET 2007-01-15T16:42:26

A suicide car bomber slammed into an Iraqi army patrol in the northern city of Mosul on Monday, killing seven people and wounding 28 others, police said.

At least 16 people were killed in bombings and shootings across Iraq on Monday, mostly outside Baghdad. The violence came as Iraqi and American forces prepared a new military offensive to pacify the Iraqi capital by cleansing it of militiamen and other sectarian killers that threaten to divide the country.

The biggest bombing occurred during evening rush hour in the al-Arabi neighborhood of Mosul, some 225 miles northwest of Baghdad. Two Iraqi soldiers were among the dead, and some houses and shops were damaged by the blast, said Ninevah police Brig. Abdul Karim al-Jubouri.

He said the army patrol had stopped near an office of the Kurdistan Democratic Party, or KDP, which is headed by the president of Iraq's autonomous Kurdish region, Massoud Barzani.

Also in Mosul, two gasoline black market vendors were killed in a drive-by shooting, another police official said. The attackers tossed a leaflet saying they would punish anyone selling fuel on the black market, the official said on condition of anonymity because of security concerns.

An off-duty policeman was also shot dead south of Mosul, said Ninevah police Brig. Abdul Karim Khalaf.

Bombings in Baghdad
At least three bombs went off across Baghdad, Iraqi officials said, including one in which a suicide attacker drove into an Iraqi army checkpoint and killed four soldiers. Another three soldiers were wounded, and the explosion set fire to two military vehicles.

A roadside bomb targeted a police car in southeastern Baghdad, killing three policemen and wounding two others, a police official said.

That attack occurred during morning rush hour near a gas station in the Rustomiyah neighborhood of Iraq's capital. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to media.

Another roadside bomb injured two policemen and two civilians, police said.

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