An Iraqi man looks at the remains of a vehicle at the scene of a car bomb explosion in Baghdad
An Iraqi man looks at the remains of a vehicle at the scene of a car bomb explosion in Baghdad's Sadr City district.

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NEW: Suicide bombing in Kirkuk kills 5, wounds 17, police say

Two deadly blasts hit predominantly Shiite neighborhoods in Baghdad

Mosul also was hit by bombings; 9 were wounded

29 died in violence Wednesday in Kirkuk and Baghdad

(CNN) —  

Eleven people – six in Baghdad and five in Kirkuk – died in attacks in the two major Iraqi cities, police said Thursday.

The incidents came amid an uptick of sectarian and political violence in the country.

The bloodiest attack was in the northern city of Kirkuk, where a suicide bomber detonated his explosive vest Thursday afternoon at the main entrance to a Shiite mosque.

At least five people died in that blast, while 17 others were wounded, police said.

In Baghdad, a car bomb explosion in Sadr City – a volatile, Shiite neighborhood in the eastern part of the Iraqi capital – left three people and and 17 more wounded, police told CNN.

Another car bomb blew up Thursday near an outdoor market in Baghdad’s Chukook neighborhood – also a predominantly Shiite district. One bystander died and five people were wounded in that attack.

Elsewhere in Baghdad, gunmen shot dead two people in the neighborhood of al-Bayaa.

Two bombs exploded in the northern city of Mosul, police said Thursday. A car bomb wounded eight people and a roadside bomb wounded a Kurdish security officer at a joint Iraqi army-Kurdish checkpoint.

Overall, violence has dropped significantly in Iraq since the peak of sectarian violence, between 2005 and 2007. But tensions and violence, stirred in part by enmity between Shiites and Sunnis, have persisted since the U.S-led invasion of Iraq in 2003.

On Wednesday, bombings in Kirkuk and Baghdad left at least 29 people dead and 120 wounded.