Iraqi police say a suicide bomber has blown himself up near a Shi'ite mosque north of Baghdad, killing at least eight people and wounding at least 13 others.
Police say the attacker struck outside Baquba Thursday as worshippers gathered for a ceremony marking Ashura, one of the holiest days in the Shi'ite Muslim calendar.
Thousands of black-clad pilgrims from across Iraq and the rest of the Muslim world are converging in the Iraqi Shi'ite city of Karbala to participate in the 10-day long religious ritual. The ritual commemorates the seventh century killing in Karbala of the grandson of Islam's Prophet Muhammad.
Iraqi authorities have announced curfews in Baghdad, Diyala and 10 southern provinces to protect pilgrims attending the event, a target in the past for militant attacks.
Separately Thursday, the U.S. military in Iraq said coalition forces killed two suspected terrorists and detained 17 others during operations targeting al-Qaida networks in northern Iraq.
The military announced coalition forces also captured one person suspected of training militants to carry out attacks on coalition and Iraqi forces.
Some information for this report was provided by AFP and Reuters.