A suicide bomber driving a car packed with explosives blew himself up in the capital of Iraq’s Kurdistan region on Wednesday, killing at least five people in the first big attack there in more than a year.

Mayor Nihad Latif Koja told Reuters the assailant had detonated himself as he tried to enter the governor’s compound, which is protected by blast walls, in the center of Arbil.

Explosions are a regular occurrence in Iraq’s federal capital Baghdad and in other cities outside Kurdistan, but the autonomous region has largely managed to insulate itself from the violence convulsing the rest of the country.

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