Published: Fri, September 15, 2017
Global | By Maureen Mccoy

50 killed, 80 injured in ISIS-claimed twin attacks in Iraq

50 killed, 80 injured in ISIS-claimed twin attacks in Iraq

At least 50 people including Iranians were killed Thursday in twin gun and auto bomb attacks near the city of Nasiriyah in southern Iraq, local officials said.

Wearing security force uniforms and driving stolen army vehicles, the attackers targeted a police checkpoint and two restaurants on a highway near the city of Nassiriya, using auto bombs and suicide vests, the sources said.

The incident took place when Daesh terrorists fired randomly at a restaurant, located next to the global highway, in Thi Qar province, killing scores of civilians.

Security sources said the attackers were disguised as members of the Hashed al Shaabi, the mainly Shia paramilitary units which fight alongside the army against IS.

The so-called Islamic State group has said it carried out the attack.

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Health officials in the province said the death toll could rise because some of those injured are in critical condition.

That was followed by blasts caused by two suicide bombers, including one driving a vehicle full of explosives, Thi Qar governor Yahya al Nassiri said.

The Sunni extremist group regularly stages attacks in Iraq, where it has lost swathes of territory to US-backed pro-government forces. Nasiriyah is the capital of Dhi Qar Governorate, which has a large Shiite population. In short statement released by its propaganda organ Qama, organization wrote that several suicide bombers participated in this attack, which killed " dozens of shiites ".

Police sources said some police officers had died in the checkpoint attack, but the toll from that incident remained unclear.

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