Explosion rocks Baghdad's Sadr City

No group has yet taken responsibility for the market bombing

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A bombing at a crowded outdoor market rocked Sadr City in eastern Baghdad on Wednesday, Iraq's security forces said.

At least 15 civilians were wounded, police and health officials told The National.

The bomb was left under a stand in the market, they said.

It is the second bombing to hit the area this year after ISIS claimed a car bombing that killed four people in April.

No group has claimed responsibility for the latest attack.

Bombings were once an almost daily occurrence in the Iraqi capital, but they became far less frequent after ISIS was defeated in 2017.

But attacks have started to increase. In January, at least 32 people were killed and 110 wounded in a twin suicide bombing in a busy commercial area of Baghdad's Tayaran Square.

It was the first suicide attack to strike Baghdad in nearly two years.

Without offering evidence, ISIS claimed responsibility for the bombing in a statement published on its official channels.

Double bombings were common in Iraq during the height of its sectarian war between 2005 and 2007.

Populist cleric Moqtada Al Sadr, after whom Sadr City is named, commands a following of millions of Iraqis, but counts ISIS among his enemies, as well as rival Shiite parties with militias backed by Iran.

The latest attack comes as the country prepares to hold a general election in October. Tensions between rival political groups has often caused violence at such times.

Prime Minister Mustafa Al Kadhimi initially scheduled the poll for June, about a year ahead of schedule, in response to widespread protests in 2019. The vote was later delayed until October 10.

Updated: July 01, 2021, 1:09 PM