At least 35 were killed and sixty others were injured on Thursday in an attack on a Shiite holy shrine near Baghdad. The attack was carried out by suicide bombers and rifles while mortars were also used for preparatory bombardment. Iraq
The incident comes just days after the worst bombing in the country since the US-led invasion of 2003, which was also claimed by ISIS. That attack, in a bustling Baghdad street packed with shoppers, killed 292 people, according to the health ministry.
“Islamic State of Iraq and Syria organization (ISIS) targeted the shrine of “Sayyed Mohammad” with mortars. This was followed by the attack of three suicide bombers on the shrine. When they were shot at, two of them blew themselves at a market near the shrine, while the third was killed,” Iraqi Military Information Office of the Joint Operations Command said in a statement.
ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack on a statement published on Telegram. Iraq
The shrine was first targeted with mortar rounds before suicide bombers arrived and opened fire. Two of the bombers blew themselves up in a market next to the shrine, while a third was killed and his explosives belt defused, the statement said, giving no further details on how he was killed.
Local sources in Sadrist Movement stated that “Salam Companies” were deployed after the suicide bombing in order to maintain security and stability and in the case of any other possible attack by ISIS. Sadrist fighters were also deployed to help the Federal Iraqi Police.
— Mustafa Al-Khaqani (@Khaqani_M) July 7, 2016
This attack comes five days after the massacre of Karrada neighborhood, in the capital Baghdad, took place, where a suicide bomber blew himself, killing 280 people and injuring 200. The attack was also claimed by ISIS.
Health Minister Adila Hamoud said late on Thursday that the bodies of 115 people killed in the bombing had now been handed over to families, while the identities of 177 others had yet to be determined.
The blast also wounded 200 people, said the minister, who on Tuesday told the AFP news agency that the process of identifying the dead – which she put at 150 at the time – was expected to take 15 to 45 days.
Police Major-General Talib Khalil Rahi said the suicide bomber on Sunday detonated a minibus loaded with plastic explosives and ammonium nitrate. Iraq
The initial blast killed a limited number of people, but flames spread and trapped people inside shopping centers that lacked emergency exits, Rahi told a news conference in Baghdad. Iraq
Interior Minister Mohammed Ghabban resigned after the attack, and authorities also announced the execution of five convicts and the arrest of 40 fighters in an apparent effort to limit the fallout.