Last Updated Thu, 29 Dec 2005 06:47:33 EST
Separate suicide bomb attacks killed four people each in the West Bank and Baghdad and wounded many more.
A suicide bomber blew himself up at a West Bank checkpoint after being prevented from reaching Israel, according to Israeli security authorities.
An Israeli guard and four Palestinians were killed. Several more were wounded.
The explosion involved two Jewish settlements near the Palestinian town of Tulkarem, about four kilometres inside the West Bank.
According to Israeli news reports, the army received an early warning of the attack and erected temporary checkpoints in several areas.
* FROM DEC. 5, 2005: Suicide bomb hits shopping mall in Israel
Security officials believed the attackers were trying to reach Israel, possibly the nearby coastal city of Netanya, where the last bombing was carried out earlier this month, but they were stalled by the roadblock.
The bomber apparently arrived by taxi. When the vehicle stopped at the roadblock for a security check, the bomber got out, approached a group of soldiers and blew himself up.
The Arabic satellite station al-Arabiya reported that Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility for the attack. The claim could not immediately be confirmed, though Islamic Jihad earlier this week rebuffed an appeal from Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas to halt attacks on Israelis.
A suicide bomber disguised as an Iraqi police officer detonated himself Thursday, killing three officers and a civilian near a government ministry in Baghdad.
Five others were wounded in the attack at the main gate to Iraq's Interior Ministry.
Police cars were entering the premises when the bomber detonated a belt of explosives.
Insurgents regularly target Iraqi police and officials.
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