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Smoke rises from the site of car bomb attack in Baghdad, May 29, 2015. REUTERS

Car Bombs Kill 10 At Top Baghdad Hotels

WT24 Desk

At least 10 people have been killed after car bombs exploded at two luxury hotels popular with Westerners in Baghdad, police say. A further 30 people have been wounded by the blasts, which involved at least one suicide bomber, according to the Associated Press. Photos on Twitter taken by witnesses show large explosions and palls of smoke rising above the scene. The two hotels targeted were the Cristal Grand Ishtar and the Babylon Warwick.

Both blasts went off in the car parks. Several media outlets are thought to be based at the Cristal. The blasts appear to have been coordinated and went off at around midnight local time (10pm UK time), a few minutes apart. The first bomb hit the Babylon hotel, where government officials often hold meetings and news conferences, killing six people and wounding 14 others.

The second was outside the Cristal, which is adjacent to the Palestine Hotel, where four people died and 13 were injured. The bombings come after Iraqi authorities lifted a decade-old night curfew in Baghdad earlier this year, as they sought to restore a sense of normality to the capital. Nobody has claimed responsibility, but a growing number of attacks are being claimed by Islamic State since the group seized large areas of the country last year. On 17 May, insurgents seized the city of Ramadi, about 70 miles (100km) west of Baghdad, in the most significant military setback to the government since a US-led coalition launched a campaign of airstrikes against IS last August.

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