BAGHDAD (AP) — Two car bombs blew up in a Baghdad suburb, the deadlier of two attacks Monday that left at least 10 dead in the Iraqi capital.
The two parked cars exploded simultaneously in a street in Husseinya, killing five civilians and as well as a policeman at a nearby checkpoint, two police officers said. It was not clear what they were targeting. Twenty-one other people including 17 civilians were wounded, they added.
Hussainya is located some 25 kilometers (15 miles) outside central Baghdad.
Inside Baghdad, a bomb went off outside a restaurant at lunchtime in the southern Dora neighborhood, two other police officers said. Four customers at the restaurant were killed and 11 people wounded, they added.
Two doctors in nearby hospitals confirmed the casualty figures. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity as they were not authorized to release information.
The attacks came a day after nine people were killed in series of explosions in and around Baghdad, one targeting an Internet cafe. Businesses and public spaces are favorite targets for militants seeking large numbers of civilian casualties.
Violence has spiked in Iraq following a deadly security crackdown on a camp in northern Iraq run by Sunnis, protesting what they consider to be their second-class treatment by the Shiite-led government. Government investigators say the April 23 incident left 40 people dead, while a spate of follow-up attacks and battles has killed well over 200 more.
Also Monday, Iraqi Shiites held a funeral for a member of a militant group whom they said was killed in Syria while defending a revered Shiite shrine.
Some Iraqi Shiite parties have been sending fighters to Syria, where a Sunni-dominated rebel movement is fighting to topple President Bashar Assad, a member of a Shiite offshoot sect.
The fighters are sometimes described as having been killed while defending Shiite holy places. Syria has several sites revered by Shiites, and the war has kindled fears that Sunni extremists, many of whom consider such shrines heretical, could attack them. The 2006 bombing of a shrine in Iraq came close to plunging the country into civil war.
Ali Falih Madhi of the Iraqi Hezbollah group said fellow member Dhiaa Mutashar Katie al-Issawi in his 20s, was killed by mortar rounds on Sunday while protecting the shrine of the Prophet Muhammad's granddaughter Zainab in Damascus.
He said that al-Issawi joined the group's Lord of the Martyrs Brigades early this year and left for Syria a month ago.
His body was collected by his family at an Iraqi border crossing with Iran in his hometown southern city of Basra. Madhi said the body was flown from Syria to Iran because the land road that links Syria to Iraq was under the control of the rebels.
The funeral procession was protected by police, who blocked all the roads leading to al-Issawi's house.
The Iraqi Hezbollah is independent of the better-known Lebanese Shiite militant group of the same name. Both receive backing from Iran.
AP writer Nabil al-Jurani contributed this report from Basra.
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