Several bombs exploded nearly simultaneously Tuesday in a mainly Shiite area in Baghdad, killing at least eight people and raising fears of a sustained insurgent campaign aimed at provoking new sectarian tensions. The five-day death toll rose to 123 in the worst spasm of bombings the country has suffered since U.S. forces left the cities at the end of June, turning over urban security to Iraqi troops, The Associated Press reports.
A ministry official said three explosions -- two from car bombs and one from an improvised explosive device -- hit a mosque, a coffee shop and gas station in Baghdad's Ameen neighborhood, CNN reports.
An explosives-laden car parked near a market entrance and two other nearby bombs detonated within minutes of one another about 8:40 p.m. in the Amin Thaniya neighborhood in east Baghdad.
The market was closed, but kebab vendors and a pharmacy were busy with customers when one of the explosions occurred.
Another bomb exploded about 20 minutes later about 900 yards from the initial blasts.
The officials all spoke on condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to release the information, The Los Angeles Times reports.