Two suicide truck bombs in Baghdad killed at least six people, including two children. Police said at least 40 were also wounded in two near simultaneous blasts at the Hamra Hotel. All the casualties are believed to be Iraqis. Two trucks that drove up to the building failed to pierce the perimeter walls and instead destroyed an apartment block, trapping residents under the rubble.
It was the second major attack on high-profile hotels in Baghdad in a month. The Sheraton and Palestine hotels were hit in late October. The Hamra is a few hundred yards from a secret Interior Ministry bunker raided on Sunday by US forces, who found 170 prisoners who had apparently been mistreated.
Al-Qaida in Iraq has reportedly posted an internet statement saying it was responsible for the attack in the capital and for the carnage in Khanaqin, a north-eastern town near the border with Iran. Two suicide bombers strapped with explosives attacked two crowded Kurdish Shi’ite mosques in Khanaqin during Friday prayers. The number of victims stood at 77 dead and 90 wounded on Friday afternoon, when there were still bodies trapped under the rubble.