Iraq: Female Suicide Bomber Kills 40, Mostly Women and Children
A female suicide bomber in Iraq has killed 40 and wounded more than 60 in an attack south of the capital of Baghdad. The attack came along the route of a religious pilgrimmage from Baghdad to the Shiite holy city of Kerbala.
A woman entered a rest-stop tent filled with mostly women and children and detonated the bomb. The attack on Friday in Iskandariya, 40km south of Baghdad, took place as Shia Muslims headed towards the holy city of Kerbala.
The deadly attack marks the third in as many days against Shiite pilgrims in the region.
A female suicide bomber attacked a tent filled with women and children resting from a pilgrimage to a Shiite holy city south of Baghdad on Friday, killing 40 people and injuring 60 others, said officials. It was the deadliest attack in Iraq this year and the third straight day of bombings against Shiite pilgrims.
The tent where the bomber detonated her explosives was located on a route to Karbala, where hundreds of thousands of Shiite pilgrims will converge for an important religious ceremony on Monday, said a police official. He spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to the media.
At least 30 pilgrims have been killed by a female suicide bomber south of Baghdad, Iraqi police say. At least 25 people were also injured in the attack in Iskandiriya, 40km (25 miles) south of Baghdad.
The blast targeted Shia pilgrims, many of whom have been travelling south to the city of Karbala to take part in an annual religious ceremony.
It is the third day of attacks on Shia pilgrims, with dozens killed in Baghdad and Mosul.
The Iskandiriya attack happened despite increased security along the route.
Most of the dead were women and children, police said.
A police captain told AFP news agency that the bomber had hidden explosives under an abaya, the traditional head-to-toe black garment, and blown herself up among the crowd just after midday (0900 GMT).
Hundreds of thousands of Shia have been converging on Karbala in recent days, to celebrate Arbaeen - the end of symbolic mourning for the Prophet Muhammad's grandson, Imam Hussein, whose shrine is in the city.