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Bombing that killed more than 200 deadliest attack in Baghdad in years

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Bombing that killed more than 200 deadliest attack in Baghdad in years

Post by Harry on Thu Jul 07, 2016 10:14 am

Bombing that killed more than 200 deadliest attack in Baghdad in years

By Mohammed Tawfeeq, Joe Sterling, Tiffany Ap and Hamdi Alkhshali, CNN

Updated 2120 GMT (0520 HKT) July 4, 2016

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The strike follows a spate of attacks believed to be conducted by ISIS
More than 80 bodies are so charred they will require DNA testing to identify

(CNN)More than a day after a suicide truck bomb ripped through Baghdad, families are still hoping that rescuers searching through the rubble can locate the bodies of their loved ones.
The bombing early Sunday in a busy shopping district was the deadliest single attack in Iraq's war-weary capital in years, killing at least 215 people, Mohamed al-Rubaye‎, deputy head of the security committee of the Baghdad Provincial Council, said Monday on Afaq TV.
Crews remain at the scene in the Karrada neighborhood where the blast occurred, trying to pull bodies from the devastation. Around 175 people were wounded, Rubaye said.
And 81 of the bodies are so charred, DNA testing will need to be conducted to identify them, he said.
One couple at the scene were searching for their teenage son who had gone to a cafe with his friends to celebrate his birthday.

Another man was looking for five relatives, including children, who were buying new clothes for Eid-al-Fitr -- the celebration that marks the end of Ramadan on Tuesday.
ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack, the latest in a string of assaults during the holy month for Muslims, a period of fasting and prayer, and also a time when jihadists launch operations against those they regard as their enemies.
Spate of terror attack as Ramadan draws to a close
A second bomb exploded Sunday at an outdoor market in the Shaab neighborhood of southeastern Baghdad, killing one person and wounding five others, police said.
Both Baghdad strikes are a sign of the Sunni-Shiite tension in the Muslim world. Sunni-dominated ISIS claimed it was targeting Shiite neighborhoods. Karrada and Shaab are predominately Shiite neighborhoods.
CNN Map
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Attacks worldwide
What is Ramadan?

What is Ramadan? 01:06
ISIS said it would carry out more terror attacks during Ramadan. The Baghdad bombing came after massacres at a cafe in Dhaka, Bangladesh, the Ataturk International Airport in Istanbul, Turkey, and security targets in Yemen. There have also been recent suicide attacks in Jordan and Lebanon.
Last month, a gunman shot up a nightclub in Orlando, Florida, an attacker killed a police commander and his partner in France, and four Israelis were killed at a Tel Aviv market.
ISIS has claimed responsibility for some of these attacks, while the terror group inspired others, authorities said.
A recent wave of suicide bombings also struck three Saudi Arabian cities over a 24-hour period ending Monday. The attacks occurred near the U.S. Consulate in Jeddah, near a Shiite mosque in Qatif, and in Medina, the holy city, where four people were killed. Analysts suspect ISIS could be behind the strikes.
Witness: 'I lost several friends'
In Karrada, college student Sadeq al Zawini, 25, was watching as rescue workers pulled bodies from the rubble.
"We've had it with the Iraqi government and politicians. They can't continue blaming Daesh and other terrorist groups. We need a solution," he said, using another name for ISIS.
"I lost several friends myself, some are still missing," he said, sobbing.
Iraqis expressed their anger over the situation when Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and other officials attempted to survey the bomb damage.
Iraqi security forces look for victims.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
Iraqi security forces look for victims.
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People look for victims after the explosion.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
People look for victims after the explosion.
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An Iraqi woman grieves at the scene of the Karrada blast on July 3. A second bomb exploded Sunday at an outdoor market in the Shaab neighborhood of southeastern Baghdad, killing one person and wounding five others, police said. Both Baghdad strikes are a sign of the Sunni-Shiite tension in the Muslim world. Sunni-dominated ISIS claimed it was targeting Shiite neighborhoods.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
An Iraqi woman grieves at the scene of the Karrada blast on July 3. A second bomb exploded Sunday at an outdoor market in the Shaab neighborhood of southeastern Baghdad, killing one person and wounding five others, police said. Both Baghdad strikes are a sign of the Sunni-Shiite tension in the Muslim world. Sunni-dominated ISIS claimed it was targeting Shiite neighborhoods.
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The Karrada attack was the deadliest incident in Baghdad in years.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
The Karrada attack was the deadliest incident in Baghdad in years.
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People hug near the site of the Karrada blast.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
People hug near the site of the Karrada blast.
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Men mourn after losing five members of their family in the Karrada bombing.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
Men mourn after losing five members of their family in the Karrada bombing.
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People light candles at the scene of the Karrada bombing.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
People light candles at the scene of the Karrada bombing.
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Women react Monday, July 4, at the site of a suicide bombing that took place a day earlier in Baghdad, Iraq. At least 200 people were killed by a truck bomb in the Karrada neighborhood. ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
Women react Monday, July 4, at the site of a suicide bombing that took place a day earlier in Baghdad, Iraq. At least 200 people were killed by a truck bomb in the Karrada neighborhood. ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack.
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A man mourns in Najaf, Iraq, during a funeral for Karrada victims on Sunday, July 3.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
A man mourns in Najaf, Iraq, during a funeral for Karrada victims on Sunday, July 3.
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A woman walks by a building that was damaged in the Karrada blast.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
A woman walks by a building that was damaged in the Karrada blast.
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Firefighters work at the scene in Karrada early on July 3.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
Firefighters work at the scene in Karrada early on July 3.
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A body is carried away from the site of the blast.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
A body is carried away from the site of the blast.
Hide Caption
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People who lost their relatives mourn after the bombing.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
People who lost their relatives mourn after the bombing.
Hide Caption
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Iraqi security forces look for victims.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
Iraqi security forces look for victims.
Hide Caption
7 of 13
People look for victims after the explosion.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
People look for victims after the explosion.
Hide Caption
8 of 13
An Iraqi woman grieves at the scene of the Karrada blast on July 3. A second bomb exploded Sunday at an outdoor market in the Shaab neighborhood of southeastern Baghdad, killing one person and wounding five others, police said. Both Baghdad strikes are a sign of the Sunni-Shiite tension in the Muslim world. Sunni-dominated ISIS claimed it was targeting Shiite neighborhoods.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
An Iraqi woman grieves at the scene of the Karrada blast on July 3. A second bomb exploded Sunday at an outdoor market in the Shaab neighborhood of southeastern Baghdad, killing one person and wounding five others, police said. Both Baghdad strikes are a sign of the Sunni-Shiite tension in the Muslim world. Sunni-dominated ISIS claimed it was targeting Shiite neighborhoods.
Hide Caption
9 of 13
The Karrada attack was the deadliest incident in Baghdad in years.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
The Karrada attack was the deadliest incident in Baghdad in years.
Hide Caption
10 of 13
People hug near the site of the Karrada blast.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
People hug near the site of the Karrada blast.
Hide Caption
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Men mourn after losing five members of their family in the Karrada bombing.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
Men mourn after losing five members of their family in the Karrada bombing.
Hide Caption
12 of 13
People light candles at the scene of the Karrada bombing.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
People light candles at the scene of the Karrada bombing.
Hide Caption
13 of 13
Women react Monday, July 4, at the site of a suicide bombing that took place a day earlier in Baghdad, Iraq. At least 200 people were killed by a truck bomb in the Karrada neighborhood. ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
Women react Monday, July 4, at the site of a suicide bombing that took place a day earlier in Baghdad, Iraq. At least 200 people were killed by a truck bomb in the Karrada neighborhood. ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack.
Hide Caption
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A man mourns in Najaf, Iraq, during a funeral for Karrada victims on Sunday, July 3.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
A man mourns in Najaf, Iraq, during a funeral for Karrada victims on Sunday, July 3.
Hide Caption
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A woman walks by a building that was damaged in the Karrada blast.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
A woman walks by a building that was damaged in the Karrada blast.
Hide Caption
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Firefighters work at the scene in Karrada early on July 3.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
Firefighters work at the scene in Karrada early on July 3.
Hide Caption
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A body is carried away from the site of the blast.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
A body is carried away from the site of the blast.
Hide Caption
5 of 13
People who lost their relatives mourn after the bombing.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
People who lost their relatives mourn after the bombing.
Hide Caption
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Iraqi security forces look for victims.
Photos: Suicide bombing kills at least 200 in Baghdad
Iraqi security forces look for victims.
Hide Caption
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Amateur videos posted on social media showed residents throwing objects at a convoy carrying Abadi in Karrada. In the videos, protesters yelled, "Thief!" and "Get out!"
Abadi called the Karrada strike "dastardly" and "cowardly" and said the country will hold a three-day mourning period.
In a statement, Abadi said he understands the reaction of residents in "that moment of grief."
He said he came to Karrada to console families and "share their sorrow in this painful tragedy that happened."
He said ISIS tried to hijack the joy that Iraqis felt over recent victories against ISIS in Falluja.
Bombing follows Iraqi gains on ISIS
This flurry of ISIS strikes during Ramadan comes as the United States said the group is losing ground in the warfare across Syria and Iraq.
Iraqi forces announced last week they have seized the city of Falluja, 40 miles west of Baghdad, from ISIS. At the time, authorities assured Baghdad residents that the bombings would stop.
The long, sad history of Falluja
Why Falluja matters

Why Falluja matters 01:04
But Cedric Leighton, a CNN military analyst and retired Air Force colonel, said he thinks the attacks will worsen, adding that ISIS' game plan is to generate instability.
"They are trying to create enough chaos in Iraq itself so that the Iraqi forces will find it very difficult to actually take advantage of the forward momentum they have achieved because of their victory in Falluja and that is a very serious issue that the al-Abadi administration is going to have to address."
Attacks such as the one in Baghdad will drive a wedge between the government and the people, in particular Shiites.
"The wedge was already there, and it's fairly easy for them to exploit this," Leighton said.
Opinion: ISIS is losing the war

CNN's Susanna Capelouto, Steve Visser and Ben Wedeman contributed to this report.

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