Iraqi authorities say a suicide bomber has blown up a car outside the interior ministry in Baghdad, killing seven people and wounding more than 30.

Officials say the assailant drove his vehicle into a security barrier near the ministry during Monday's morning rush hour. They say five policemen were among those killed.

The attack follows a series of Baghdad bombings that killed about 70 people on Thursday, the deadliest day in Iraq for months.

Baghdad Explosion Map

The attacks have raised concern about the Iraqi government's ability to secure the country as it tries to resolve a political crisis that erupted as the U.S. military completed a troop pullout earlier this month.

Iraq's Shi'ite Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki has ordered the arrest of Sunni Vice President Tareq al-Hashemi on suspicion of running a death squad. Hashemi denies the charge and fled to northern Iraq's autonomous Kurdistan region to avoid detention.

Iraq Ethnic Map

Leaders of Iraq's Sunni minority have complained that Maliki is monopolizing power in the hands of majority Shi'ites and excluding Sunnis from decision-making. Iraq's main Sunni-backed political bloc, Iraqiya, remains a part of Maliki's national unity government, but has temporarily suspended its participation in parliament to protest the prime minister's actions.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

Join the conversation on our social journalism site - Middle East Voices. Follow our Middle East reports on Twitter and discuss them on our Facebook page.

Special Project

More Coverage