ISIS says behind blasts near Baghdad hotels

Iraqi security examine the wreckage of cars at the Babylon hotel in Baghdad on May 29, 2015, after a car bomb ripped through the parking lot early in the morning. (AFP)

The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) claimed responsibility on Friday for bombings outside two heavily fortified five-star hotels in the Iraqi capital that killed 10 people.

In a statement, ISIS said a suicide bomber called Abu Qutaiba had parked a car outside the Ishtar hotel in central Baghdad late on Thursday before driving another vehicle laden with 230 kg of explosives to the nearby Babylon hotel.

The bomber detonated himself and the vehicle he was driving there around the same time the first car bomb exploded, "killing and wounding dozens of infidels", according to the statement.

Iraqi authorities lifted a decade-old night-time curfew on Baghdad early this year, seeking to restore a sense of normality to the capital as security forces battle ISIS insurgents who have overrun large parts of the country.

But the rate of bombings in Baghdad has increased since then.

Militants seized Ramadi, the Anbar provincial capital west of Baghdad, on May 17 in the most significant military setback to the government since a U.S.-led coalition launched a campaign of air strikes against ISIS last August.

Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:46 - GMT 06:46