Baghdad: At least 21 people were killed and 42 others injured in a car-bombing in southeastern Baghdad on Saturday.
According to the local police officers, the attack targeted Shiite pilgrims walking to Baghdad’s holy Kadhimiyah shrine, reports the New York Times.
However, other Iraqi security officials said the attack targeted an open-air market. Both giving tow different accounts could not be immediately reconciled.
The officials spoke on a condition of anonymity since they were not authorized to speak to media.
There has been no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack. However, the Islamic State group in the past has claimed similar attacks targeting Shiite pilgrims and civilians in Baghdad’s Shiite neighborhoods.
The insurgent group controls large swaths of Iraq’s west and north, but, has suffered a series of territorial losses over the past year.
Analysts and Iraqi security officials say that the extremist group in the face of those losses has increased insurgent-style attacks in Baghdad and other areas far from the frontline fighting.