U.S. and U.N. denounce Baghdad blasts that killed 32 people

A member of Iraqi Security Forces is pictured in the Tayaran Square in central Baghdad, January 21, 2021. (Anadolu Agency)

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — Acting U.S. Secretary of State Daniel Smith and U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Thursday condemned a twin suicide bombing that killed 32 people in a crowded market in central Baghdad.

The Iraqi military said earlier on Thursday that two attackers wearing explosive vests blew themselves up among shoppers at a crowded market in Tayaran Square in central Baghdad.

The Iraqi ministry of health said 110 other people were injured in the attack.

“We condemn in the strongest possible terms today’s terrorist attacks in Baghdad,” Smith said in a statement.

“They were vicious acts of mass murder and a sobering reminder of the terrorism that continues to threaten the lives of innocent Iraqis,” he added.

The U.N. chief called on the Iraqi government to find those behind the blasts and bring them to justice, according Guterres’ spokesman Stephane Dujarric.

“The Secretary-General strongly condemns the deadly double suicide bombing targeting civilians at a market in Baghdad today,” Dujarric said in a statement.

“The Secretary-General appeals to the people of Iraq to reject any attempts to spread fear and violence aimed at undermining peace, stability and unity,” he added.

Suicide attacks, once an almost daily occurrence in the Iraqi capital, have halted in recent years since Islamic State (ISIS) fighters were defeated in 2017, part of an overall improvement in security that has brought normal life back to Baghdad.

Thursday’s attack took place in the same market that was struck in the last big attack, in January, 2018, when at least 27 people were killed.

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