IS bomber kills 60 near Baghdad

A suicide bomber rammed his explosive-laden fuel truck into a security checkpoint south of Baghdad on Sunday, killing at least 60 people and wounding more than 70, officials said. The Islamic State jihadi group claimed responsibility for the attack. In a statement posted on social media, IS named the bomber as Abu Islam al-Ansari. “The Rafidha (a derogatory term for Shias) must understand that the battle has just begun and that the worst is yet to come,” the statement said. The group claimed that the explosion had killed and wounded “more than 90″ people. The attack was the deadliest bombing by IS in Iraq this year. It was also the third massive bombing in and around Baghdad in a little over a week.

The escalation in IS bombings suggests that Iraqi government forces are being stretched thin after their recent gains against the group in Western and northern provinces. Crowds gathered at the scene, picking through rubble ad car parts in search of survivors. Smoke rose from smoldering cars that had been lined up at the checkpoint at the northern entrance to the city of Hillah, located about 95km south of Baghdad. The blast has completely destroyed the checkpoint and its buildings,” a security official in Hillah said. “Over 100 cars have been damaged.” Hillah is in the country’s mainly Shia south, far from the front lines of the war against IS.

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