ISIS claims deadly bombing in western Iraq
The Islamic State claimed responsibility for a suicide car bomb attack on a security checkpoint in western Iraq that killed at least eight people earlier on Wednesday, the group’s news agency Amaq said.
The hardline Sunni militant group said the attack killed 28 people, contradicting death toll provided by the local mayor which stood at eight deaths.
The 9 am (0600 GMT) bombing at a checkpoint on the outskirts of Al-Qaim also wounded 16 people — 11 civilians and five security personnel, police Captain Mahmud Jassem told AFP.
Major General Qasem al-Dulaimi told the Associated Press the attacker drove a booby-trapped vehicle into a joint security checkpoint managed by the Iraqi army and the Popular Mobilisation Forces at the southern entrance of the town.
The town, on the Syrian border some 340 kilometres (215 miles) from Baghdad, was one of the last in Iraq to be recaptured from the Islamic State group in November last year.
One month later, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi declared victory over the jihadists.
But since then, the security forces have announced a number of campaigns to flush out holdout IS fighters from sparsely populated areas from which they have continued to mount attacks.
The vast desert that straddles the border with Syria on either side of the Euphrates valley town of Al-Qaim has been one the jihadists’ principal hideouts.
(Arab Weekly staff and news agencies)