ISIL claims responsibility for Iraq blasts

Group says it targeted Shia fighters in retaliation for ongoing government operations in Anbar province.

    The claim of bombing responsibility by ISIL is similar to previous claims this past week [Reuters]
    The claim of bombing responsibility by ISIL is similar to previous claims this past week [Reuters]

    The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) group has claimed responsibility for a late-night car bomb attack in Baghdad that killed at least 13 people, saying it was targeting a Shia armed group.

    The two car bombs went off about 10 minutes apart late on Saturday in the Iraqi capital's Karrada district, known for its restaurants, cafes and ice cream parlours.

    Police said the dead and wounded were mainly shoppers and people commemorating the anniversary of the death of Imam Ali, a key figure in Shia Islam. Two traffic policemen were among those killed.

    The AP news agency put the number of dead higher at 19.

    A statement claiming to be by the group was shared on Twitter claiming responsibility for the attacks. It said the group had targeted a gathering of Shia fighters, and had killed and injured close to a hundred people.

    A police colonel told the AFP news agency that the attack had taken place near a popular restaurant in Karrada.

    Sunday's claim of responsibility by ISIL is similar to previous claims this past week, in which the group characterised the attacks as a response to fighting in the western Anbar province.

    Baghdad has seen a jump in car bombs in the last week.

    The attacks on Saturday follow a wave of car bombings on Thursday, which killed 11 people and wounded more than 40.

    Another nine people died in two car bombings in Baghdad on Monday.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    The shocking story of Israel's disappeared babies

    The shocking story of Israel's disappeared babies

    New information has come to light about thousands of mostly Yemeni children believed to have been abducted in the 1950s.

    Stories from the sex trade

    Stories from the sex trade

    Dutch sex workers, pimps and johns share their stories.

    Inside the world of India's booming fertility industry

    Inside the world of India's booming fertility industry

    As the stigma associated with being childless persists, some elderly women in India risk it all to become mothers.