Baghdad attack: Isis claims responsibility after 78 dead in car bombing

The bombings came near the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, when the streets are filled with young people and families after dusk

The death toll from an Isis-claimed car bombing in Baghdad, Iraq, has risen to 78, according to Iraqi officials.

More than 160 people were wounded in the attack on a market in Karada, a Shia-majority neighbourhood, as families and young people were out on the streets after breaking their daylight fast for the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.

Shortly afterwards, an improvised explosive device went off in eastern Baghdad, killing five people and wounding 16.

People gather at the site of a suicide car bomb in the Karada shopping area, in Baghdad, Iraq, 3 July, 2016 (Reuters)

Isis claimed responsibility for the first attack, releasing a statement to say a suicide car bomber targeted Shiites and warning “the raids of the mujahedeen [holy warriors] against the Rafidha [Shiites] apostates will not stop”.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the second bombing.

At dawn on Sunday, fire fighters were still working to extinguish blazes at the Karada blast site and bodies were still being recovered from charred buildings.

Many of the dead were children, according to a team from The Associated Press at the scene.


Iraqis react at the site of suicide car bomb attack in the Karada district of central Baghdad, Iraq, 3 July, 2016 (EPA)

Ambulances could be heard rushing to the site for hours following the blast. An eyewitness said the explosion caused fires at nearby clothing and cellphone shops.

The attacks came just over a week after Iraqi forcesdeclared the city of Fallujah “fully liberated” from Isis.

Over the last year, Iraqi forces have racked up territorial gains against Isis, retaking the city of Ramadi and the towns of Hit and Rutba, all in Iraq’s vast Anbar province, west of Baghdad.

Despite the government’s victories on the battlefield, Isis has repeatedly shown it remains capable of launching attacks far from the front-lines.

The terror group remains in control of Iraq’s second largest city of Mosul, as well as significant areas of territory in the country’s north and west


Categories: Arab World, Iraq

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