Iraq bombing: 120 dead after attacker detonates ice truck at market
Promising cheap relief from the scorching Iraqi summer heat, a suicide bomber with an ice truck lured more than 100 people to their deaths Friday.
ISIS claimed responsibility, in a post on Twitter, for the attack at a crowded open-air market in Khan Bani Saad, near Baghdad. It was one of the deadliest attacks in Iraq in recent months.
Throngs of shoppers were buying provisions on the eve of Eid al-Fitr, a joyous Muslim holiday marking the end of Ramadan. According to two local police officials, a man in a truck pulled up and announced he was not only selling ice, but offering a discount because of the holiday.
Although the sun had gone down, the temperature was still around 35 degrees Celsius (95 degrees Fahrenheit), so the prospect of cheap ice drew hundreds to the truck, according to police.
With ice visible in the truck, the merchant appeared legitimate — but police said hidden beneath was at least one ton of explosives.
Videos posted on social media showed scenes of devastation — a large fire, and bodies and debris over a wide area. Several multistory buildings appeared to have been heavily damaged.
Daylight revealed a huge crater in the street where the vehicle had exploded.
By Saturday the death toll had risen to 120, according to Muthana al Tamimi, governor of Diyala province.
But with 160 more wounded in the blast, that may go up.
Khan Bani Saad is a largely Shiite area about 35 kilometers (21 miles) north of the Iraqi capital.
CNN’s Nick Paton Walsh, Hamdi Alkhshali, Jomana Karadsheh, and Rachel Aissen contributed to this report.
By Kevin Conlon, Jason Hanna and Mohammed Tawfeeq