Source: USA TODAY
The small bomb exploded inside the courtyard of the motherhouse just moments after Sister Maria Hanna received an anonymous phone call warning her to get her nuns out of the area.
The recent attack on the Immaculate Virgin convent was nothing new. By Hanna's count, it was the 20th time the convent in the nearby northern city of Mosul had come under attack since the start of the war.
"One time it was an RPG (rocket-propelled grenade)," said Hanna, ticking off the litany of attacks against the convent that has been her home for 52 years. "One time a car bomb exploded just outside the motherhouse. One time they set fire to a propane can and left it in front of our gate."
The attacks in Mosul reflect how daily life remains tenuous for many Christians in Iraq, where complex and long-lasting religious conflicts and sectarian violence among Muslim militants persist despite improving security.