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13 Aug, 2015 04:57

ISIS truck bomb in Baghdad kills more than 70 and injures 200

A powerful truck bomb blast has hit the Shia-dominated Sadr-City district of the Iraqi capital, killing dozens and injuring more than 200 people. Islamic State fighters claimed responsibility for the explosion.

There are conflicting reports of the number of casualties. The Associated Press cited Iraqi officials who said that at least 54 were dead and 86 wounded, while Agence France-Presse said that at least 33 people have been killed in the explosions. Reuters has given the highest numbers of casualties so far, at 76 dead and 200 injured.

The blast took place in the Jameela market, two police officials told AP.

"A refrigerator truck packed with explosives blew up inside the Jamila market at around 6 a.m. [0300 GMT]," police official Muhsin al-Saedi told Reuters. "Many people were killed and body parts were thrown on top of nearby buildings."

A local witness told Reuters that he saw blood and bodily remains among the fruit and vegetables at the market.

READ MORE: Dozens killed in series of suicide & car bombings in Baghdad

Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) has claimed responsibility for the attack in a statement posted online. The group says it targeted Iraqi army and militia fighters in the Shiite neighborhood.

Islamic State militants, who have controlled almost one-third of Iraq since June 2014, have repeatedly performed similar attacks in Shia-dominated neighborhoods. The ISIS jihadists now control two Iraqi provincial capitals, as well as the city of Fallujah.