ISIS Claims Responsibility For Car Bomb in Central Baghdad That Killed 13

"It was a very, very ugly scene", said journalist Hareth Al-Harethi, who was 20 meters away from the ice cream shop when the bomb exploded.

The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS), claimed responsibilty for the first attack, which came as the Muslim holy month of Ramadan got under way.

The nighttime attack outside the ice cream parlor in the bustling Karrada neighborhood killed 15 people and also wounded 27, police and health officials said. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity in line with regulations.

Images and footage posted on social media showed the devastating impact of the blast, which ripped through the crowded area around Al-Faqma ice cream shop in the Karrada district of central Baghdad, scattering rubble across the street.

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The attack killed at least 11 people and wounding at least 40, officials said. The cafes and restaurants were crowded with people of all ages venturing out to break their Ramadan fast.

The incident took place when a booby-trapped vehicle exploded at the busy intersection near al-Shuhadaa Bridge, across the Tigris River, in central Baghdad, Xinhua news agency quoted the ministry source as saying.

Earlier, the source put the toll at three people killed and 17 others wounded. No group has claimed the two later attacks.

The terror group is slowly being driven out of the city of Mosul, its last stronghold in Iraq, by a coalition of Iraqi government troops, regional Shia militias and Kurdish fighters. It was seen as the deadliest attack in Iraq since the US -led invasion of the country in 2003.

Later in the day, bombings in and around the Iraqi capital killed seven more people.

"All of us are deeply distressed that one of our smiling students has been taken from us in a cruel act of violence that is beyond understanding", College executive principal Halid Serdar Takimoglu said.

Slamming the "criminal" strikes in the holy month of Ramadan as a clear sign of Takfiri terrorists' ingrained hostility toward true Islam and Muslims, the Iranian diplomat described the fatal bombings in Baghdad as part of last-ditch attempts by terrorists to escape defeat in Iraq.

  • Leroy Wright