In an attack many see as a revenge strike after the Saudi execution of a top Shi’ite cleric, a group of unknown attackers wearing Iraqi military uniforms attacked and bombed a pair of Sunni mosques just south of Baghdad.
The attackers hit Hilla, destroying the dome of the Ammar bin Yasir mosque, and then moving against the nearby Fath al-Mubeen mosque, where police reported a guard was killed. Iraqi officials have so far not confirmed the casualties.
Iraqi officials seem eager to dismiss the idea of Shi’ite attackers, however, with Prime Minister Hayder Abadi saying the gunmen are “ISIS and those who are similar to them,” and other officials suggested it was a false flag to fuel sectarian unrest.
While it wouldn’t be unprecedented for ISIS to attack a Sunni mosque they saw as deviating from their worldview, it would be unusual for them to hit two mosques unannounced in a mixed-sect area like Iskandariyah, and barring some claim of responsibility the assumption will likely continue to be a Shi’ite militia launching the strikes.
Last 5 posts by Jason Ditz
- Germany Suspends Training for Iraqi Kurdish Troops - October 18th, 2017
- Oil Firm Sees Congressional Vote on Iran Deal as Potential Positive - October 18th, 2017
- Saudi Airstrike Kills Six Civilians, Mostly Children, in North Yemen - October 18th, 2017
- Kurdish Independence at Risk Amid Iraqi Offensive - October 18th, 2017
- Catalonia Will Declare Independence If Spain Suspends Autonomy - October 18th, 2017