A suicide car bombing near a cafe and another bomb attack inside it killed ten people in central Iraq on Thursday, while bomb attacks in Baghdad killed four others, security officials said.
The suicide bomber attacked a cafe in the village of Garma, north of Baquba in Diyala province, police Lieutenant Colonel Ahmed al-Karkhi said.
A second bomb exploded inside the cafe as dead and wounded were being carried out, Karkhi said, according to AFP.
“We received 10 bodies and 18 wounded,” Abdul-Razaq Hussein, a doctor in Baquba hospital, told Reuters, adding that the toll was final.
Diyala province, a fertile agricultural area, has long been one of the most volatile regions in Iraq, inhabited by a mix of Sunnis, Shiites and Kurds.
A car bomb exploded on Thursday afternoon in the Hurriyah area of north Baghdad, killing two people and wounding nine, an interior ministry official said.
A medical source at Kadhimiyah hospital said it had received two bodies and 12 wounded.
And a bomb targeted an Iraqi army patrol in Sadr City in north Baghdad, killing two people and wounding 13, the ministry official said.
Tensions between Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds in Iraq’s coalition government have been high since U.S. forces withdrew in December, raising fears of a return to the sectarian violence that almost drove the country to the edge of civil war a few years ago.
Although violence in Iraq has dropped sharply from the height of sectarian fighting in 2006-07, bombings and killings still occur on a daily basis. In March, 112 Iraqis were killed, according to government figures.
Last Thursday, more than 20 bombs hit cities and towns across Iraq, killing at least 36 people and wounding almost 170.
Al-Qaeda’s front group the Islamic State of Iraq claimed the April 19 attacks in a statement on the Honein jihadist website the following day.
“We assure you that this invasion is the beginning of what is waiting for you in the next days, and one phase in a blessed series that has been launched, and will not stop until God judges between us” and the Shiites, the statement said.
There was no immediate indication that the latest attacks in Baquba and Baghdad were coordinated.