A suicide car bombing ripped through an outdoor market in a Shiite-dominated northeastern district of Baghdad on Tuesday morning, killing at least 11 people, officials said, as government forces deployed in most of the Iraqi capital and closed off major roads around the city.
The developments came on the heels of two large-scale attacks claimed by the Islamic State group that killed more than 300 people last week. On Monday, visiting US Defense Secretary Ash Carter said Washington will send 560 more troops to Iraq to help battle IS.
In Tuesday’s bombing, the explosives-laden pickup truck exploded during the morning rush hour at a vegetable and fruit market in the al-Rashidiya district, a police officer said. The blast killed 11 and wounded up to 32, and also damaged several cars, he added.
A medical official confirmed the casualty figures. Both officials spoke on condition of anonymity as they were not authorized to talk to the media.
No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, but it bore the hallmarks of the Islamic State group. The Sunni extremists, who consider Shiites heretics, swept across northern and western Iraq in the summer of 2014, capturing large chunks of territory and plunging the country into its worst crisis since US troops left at the end of 2011.
Last week, IS killed more than 300 people in two attacks. A massive truck bombing struck a bustling commercial area in a Baghdad’s predominantly Shiite neighborhood of Karada, killing 292 people — one of the deadliest attacks since the 2003 US-led invasion. And last Thursday, an attack at a Shiite shrine north of Baghdad killed 37 people.