Baghdad, September 15: As many as 74 innocent civilians were killed including 7 Iranians and 93 others were injured in the twin gun-and-car bomb attacks near the city of Nasiriyah in southern Iraq on Thursday. Islamic State terrorist organization quickly claimed responsibility in an online statement on its media arms, the Aamaq news agency.
Notably, the twin attack took place in the southern province of Thi Qar on Thursday after an unidentified assailant opened fire inside the restaurant on the main highway that links the capital Baghdad with the southern provinces. However, most of the dead are likely Iranian visitors who were inside the restaurant.
As soon as the assailant opened fire, a car carrying heavy explosive items targeted a security checkpoint in the same area. After the fierce attack, the casualties were evacuated to nearby hospitals but the death toll is expected to rise further as many are critically injured.
ISIS claimed responsibility for the suicide attacks. A statement on the Amaq news agency, which supports ISIS, said the attacks carried out by its suicide fighters targeted a restaurant and a checkpoint, killing dozens.
Earlier, in the month of August this year, 20 civilians were killed and 28 others were injured after a car explosion took place in the Iraqi capital Baghdad. This attack was also led by ISIS. Interestingly, the explosion took place at a time when US-backed Iraqi forces are in final stages of recapturing the northern town of Tal Afar from ISIS, about 150 km from Syria’s border. Similar kind of bomb blasts took place earlier also.