Over 70 Killed in Latest Baghdad Blasts; Islamic State Terrorists Claim Responsibility


Hospital sources have confirmed that more than 70 people died in devastating explosions, which rocked the Iraqi capital Baghdad on Sunday. With over 100 others also sustained injuries – many of the dead and the injured are said to be children – the Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the attack.

The explosions happened in Sadr City, a southern suburb of Baghdad. Security officials said two bombs went off at the crowded Maridi market area, located in the heart of the Shia District. It is a place for buying and selling mobile phones. The majority of the people trading in the market are said to be Shia Muslims.

Local reporters said the first bomb ripped through the market, causing many casualties. When people gathered to try and help the injured and tend to the dead, suicide bombers riding motorcycles invaded the crowd; one quickly detonating his bomb and causing further damage. The first bomb that went off is believed to have been planted in the market during the night.

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The police arriving later, sealed off the area of the incident. Special bomb squads were also dispatched to search for possible hidden explosive devices at the market.

Local media outlets initially put the number of dead at 28, but the figure was later disputed by hospital officials. Hospital officials said some of the injured are in critical condition, fearing that the death toll may rise again.

In a statement circulated online, the self-proclaimed Islamic State cruelly claimed responsibility for the attack. They said on Twitter that the attack was a revenge of Sunnis who have died at the hands of Shias. Twitter has since detected those accounts, and has deleted them.

The division between Sunni Muslims and Shia Muslims in the Middle East is very complex and deeply embedded,  resulting in many innocent lives lost.

On that same Sunday when this explosion happened, Iraqi forces said they managed to repel another deadly attack launched by Islamic State fighters. This attack happened around the Baghdad suburb of Abu Ghraib.

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According to police, suicide car bombers struck a security force’s barracks, and several gunmen opened fire. The security forces recorded casualties, with hospital officials again confirming that at least 12 government officials and 35 security force members were killed during the attack.

Major General Saad Harbiya, the commander of military operations in western Baghdad, told local media that the situation has been brought “under control,” and that the government has imposed a curfew in the area to allow the security forces to have full control of the situation.

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