A series of loud explosions shook the area near Najaf (search)'s sprawling cemetery on Sunday, a day after the breakdown of talks intended to end the fighting in this holy city.

Shiite (search) militants have been hiding out in the cemetery and fighting running gunbattles with U.S. forces amid the tombs there since the violence broke out here Aug. 5.

About 10 explosions followed by gunfire were heard coming from the cemetery area Sunday afternoon. It was unclear if they signaled a resumption in U.S. military activities to rout the militants.