Basra: A suicide attacker blew up a car bomb in front of a police station in Iraq's main southern city of Basra on Monday, killing at least four people, three of them policemen, officials said.

The explosion occurred close to provincial government offices and badly damaged the facade of the emergency response brigade building which was targeted, as well as several nearby cars and shops.

"Four policemen were killed and three were wounded in the attack," said Ali Maliki, the head of Basra provincial council's security committee.

A doctor at the city's Al Sadr hospital, however, put the toll at four dead, three of them police, and 24 wounded.