At least 77 people were killed and more than 140 wounded by three bombings in Baghdad today, extending the deadliest spate of attacks in the Iraqi capital so far this year and driving Shi’ite fighters into the streets to defend some areas.
Powerful cleric Moqtada al-Sadr blamed the government for failing to provide security and hundreds of militiamen loyal to him deployed in Sadr City and five other mainly Shi’ite areas where the worst of where the recent violence has been centered.
Islamic State claimed a suicide bombing which killed 41 people and wounded more than 70 in the northern district of al-Shaab as well as a car bomb in nearby Sadr City that left at least 30 dead and 57 wounded, police and medical sources said. Another car blew up in al-Rasheed, south of the capital, killing six and wounding 21, the sources said.
Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi has however ordered the arrest of the official in charge of al-Shaab’s security, his office said in a statement, without giving a reason.