At least 68 people are reported to have been killed in bomb attacks in southern Iraq and in the capital Baghdad. Officials said 44 people died in a suicide attack targeting Shia pilgrims in the city of Nasiriya.
Earlier, at least 24 people were killed in a number of blasts in Shia areas of Baghdad. Sectarian tensions have risen after the last US combat troops left in December and an arrest warrant was issued for Sunni Vice-President Tariq al-Hashemi.
The BBC's Rafid Jabboori in Baghdad says Iraq is going through a severe political crisis and the situation in the country is tense.
The Interior Ministry's National Centre for Operations said the number of dead in the Nasiriya attack was 44.
TVNL Comment: Sectarian violence was held in check by Saddam Hussein. This is another gift to the Iraqi people from Operation Iraqi Freedom.