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Coordinated IS attack in Iraq kills 50

Coordinated IS attack in Iraq kills 50

In Iraq, at least 50 people including Iranians were killed today in twin gun and vehicle bomb attacks in southern Iraq.

Another 50 people were wounded in one of the attacks close to a restaurant near Nasiriyah, said a senior provincial health official, Jassem al-Khalidi.

More than 80 people were injured in the attacks, many of them seriously, and the death toll could rise, health officials said.

Security sources said the attackers were disguised as members of the Hashed al Shaabi, the mainly Shia paramilitary units which fight alongside the army against IS. Nasiriyah is the capital of Dhi Qar Governorate, which has a large Shiite population. Bomb attacks in the mostly Shi'ite south, where the bulk of the country's oil is produced and security forces hold a tighter grip, have so far been relatively rare.

The toll makes it the deadliest Daesh attack in Iraq since pro-government forces drove the extremists out of second city Mosul in July.

Iraqi and Kurdish security officials say the Sunni militants are likely to wage a guerrilla war in Iraq after their self-proclaimed caliphate in Mosul collapsed.

The attack occurred as Iraqi forces battled to defeat ISIS terrorists in areas under their control.

IS claimed responsibility for the attacks on the website for its news agency, Amaq.

The group's only other stronghold is Hawija, in Kirkuk province some 300 kilometres north of Baghdad.


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