Suicide attack leaves 15 dead in Iraq

Suicide car bombs targeting security checkpoints killed 15 people in Iraq on Thursday, officials said.

Police said a suicide bomber rammed his explosives-laden car into a police checkpoint in the town of Youssifiyah, just south of the capital Baghdad, killing three police and four civilians, and wounding another 21 people.

Later on, a suicide bomber driving a pickup loaded with explosives struck a checkpoint manned by police and Shiite militiamen near the city of Samarra, killing eight people and wounding 23 others. Samarra and surrounding areas have repeatedly come under attack in recent months by the Islamic State group. Samarra is 60 miles north of Baghdad.

Medical officials confirmed the casualty figures from both attacks. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk to journalists.

Iraq sees near-daily bombings and other attacks mainly targeting the Shiite majority and security forces. The attacks are often claimed by the Islamic State, a Sunni extremist group that seized much of northern and western Iraq last year.