Several car bombs have exploded in and near Baghdad, killing at least 10 people and wounding many more. The blasts come as Iraqis are still coming to grips with news of Saddam Hussein's capture, and they indicate that the resistance to the U.S.-led occupation is far from over.
Car bombs exploded outside two police stations early Monday, a day after news broke that coalition forces had captured Saddam Hussein. The deadliest blast went off in the town of Husseiniyah, about 18 kilometers north of Baghdad. It left a meter-deep crater in the ground outside the police station and killed a number of the officers stationed there.
The other bomb exploded in the Amiriyah neighborhood in western Baghdad, outside the Iraqi police bureau of criminal investigations.
Iraqi police found a third car bomb outside the same Amiriyah police station, but demolition experts managed to defuse it before it exploded.
Sergeant Luay Abdul Hamid of the Iraqi civil defense force was about 400 meters away from the first Amiriyah bomb when it went off. Sergeant Hamid says we heard the explosion and then ran to help the wounded police officers. It was a suicide bombing. He says the first car exploded, and the second arrived a few minutes later but did not blow up.
Witnesses say the driver of the second car ran away from the explosive-packed vehicle after police and U.S. soldiers opened fire on him. He returned fire and ran into a nearby building. U.S. troops in tanks have sealed off the area around the police station with razor wire.
Iraqi people and coalition officials alike had feared an immediate upsurge in violence following the arrest of Saddam, and the sudden wave of attacks indicates those fears are being realized.
The coalition believes remnants of Saddam's regime have spearheaded many of the attacks. But military officials also say there are some foreign elements at work in Iraq, trying to undermine the coalition's efforts to stabilize the country.