- Middle East/North Africa
Bombs in two majority Shia Muslim cities in southern Iraq killed 28 people on Thursday, police and hospital sources said.
Scores were wounded in the blasts, which struck during the month of Muharram, a Muslim holy month when Shias are often targeted by Al-Qaeda's Iraqi affiliate and other Sunni Muslim insurgents.
Two explosions near a restaurant in the city of Hilla, 100 km south of Baghdad, killed 26 people.
In the city of Kerbala, a car bomb near a bus terminal where Shia pilgrims usually gather killed another two people, a spokesperson for the local health office said.
Violence in Iraq has eased since the carnage of 2006-2007, but Sunni Islamists still launch frequent attacks, seeking to reignite sectarian strife and undermine the Shia-led government's efforts to provide security.
On Tuesday, car bombs targeting Shia in mourning processions often held during the holy month killed 14 people in Baghdad.