(Reuters/IraqiNews.com) A woman detonated her explosive belt in a market east of the Shi’ite holy city of Kerbala on Friday, killing at least 30 and wounding 35, Iraqi security sources said.
Islamic State claimed the attack in the town of Musayab, south of Baghdad, in a statement on its Amaq news agency. It didn’t the bomber.
A security officer said the assailant was a woman who hid the bomb under the customary full-body veil.
The attack comes as Islamic State is about to lose Mosul, the de-facto capital of the hardline Sunni Muslim group in Iraq, to a U.S.-backed Iraqi offensive launched in October.
The group is also on the backfoot in neighboring Syria, retreating in the face of a U.S.-backed Kurdish-led coalition attacking its capital there, Raqqa,.
Iranian-backed paramilitaries are taking part in the campaign fighting Islamic State in Iraq, attacking the group in the border region near Syria.
Islamic State declared a self-styled “caliphate” over parts of Syria and Iraq three years ago.
According to a monthly count released on Thursday by the United Nations Assistance Mission in Iraq, violence and armed conflicts left 824 Iraqis dead and wounded during the month of May.
Nineveh came on top of the most affected governorates with 354 Iraqi civilians were killed and another 470 injured. Baghdad came in second place with 86 victims and 22 injured. Anbar came third with a total of 136 casualties (47 killed and 89 injured)
The total number of victims marked a rise from 317 Iraqis in April. In March, the victims reached 1115, according to UNAMI.