Suicide bombing at outdoor market in Baghdad kills 11

BAGHDAD, July 12 (UPI) — At least 11 people died and 32 were injured Tuesday when a suicide attacker detonated a bomb in a pickup truck during morning rush hour at an outdoor market in Baghdad’s predominantly Shiite al-Rashidiya district.

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack but the Islamic State has a history of carrying out similar attacks in the region. The Islamic State is predominantly a Sunni militant group, which considers Shiites to be heretics.

Iraqi security forces said they defused a second explosive truck parked underneath the Rashidiya bridge. Authorities blocked several major roads around Baghdad following the attack.

Baghdad has been targeted in increasingly devastating attacks against civilians in 2016 as the Islamic State is losing the ground war against Iraqi security forces and the U.S.-led anti-Islamic State coalition.

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The Islamic State has lost about 12 percent of the territory it controlled in Iraq and Syria within the first half of 2016, according to IHS. The Islamic State’s self-proclaimed “caliphate” decreased to about 26,400 square miles, down from 30,100 square miles.

The loss of territory has led the militant movement to increase attacks on civilian targets in the Middle East and Europe, IHS said in a statement — warning that attacks are likely to continue.

On July 2, the militant Islamist group carried out a bombing in a Baghdad shopping area that killed nearly 300 people. The massive truck bomb was detonated ahead of the Eid al-Fitr celebration, which ends the holy month of Ramadan.

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