ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) – Iraqi authorities confirmed over 100 people had been killed and wounded in a twin attack in southern Iraq on Thursday.
Following the violence, the Islamic State (IS) claimed responsibility for a third attack which has yet to be confirmed by officials.
“Sixty people were killed, including Iranian citizens,” said Jasim al-Khalidi, the Director General of Health in the Dhi Qar Province.
At least 50 people have been killed, and over 80 more injured in a coordinated shooting and car bomb attack in the southern Iraqi city of Nasiriyah, Reuters reported.
According to Iraqi officials, a group of gunmen entered a restaurant in Dhi Qar and opened fire.
Two suicide bombers, including one Suicide-Borne Vehicle Improvised Explosive Device (SBVIED), targeted a nearby checkpoint, Iraqi officials told the Associated Press.
Among the casualties are Iranian pilgrims who were sat in the restaurant in the first attack, Iranian media reported. Governor Yahya al-Nassiri of Dhi Qar confirmed the claim with AP.
In a statement on the IS-affiliated Amaq news channel, the group claimed responsibility for the attacks carried out by its suicide fighters, adding it had targeted a restaurant on the Basra road as well.
The death toll is expected to rise, health officials reported.
Nasiriyah is the capital of the Dhi Qar Governorate, which has a large Shia population in southern Iraq.
As the militant group continues to lose territory in Iraq and Syria, Iraqi security forces are concerned with the increase of insurgency-style attacks by remaining IS cells in the country.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany