Masked gunmen assassinated a high-ranking Iraqi police officer on Sunday in southwestern Baghdad (search) and wounded his bodyguards, police said.

Col. Yassin Ibrahim Jawad (search) was heading to his work at 8 a.m. when the assailants, driving a white Opel sedan, attacked his car in Baghdad's neighborhood of Al-Baya, police Col. Sa'ad Abdul Razaq said.

Nadiyah Khalid, a doctor at the capital's al-Yarmouk hospital, said that one of the injured was in critical situation.

"We received three patients," she said. "One was dead, one is critical and one is semi-stable."

Insurgents have frequently targeted Iraqi officials and security troops whom they view as collaborators with U.S. occupiers.