— Steven nabil (@thestevennabil) May 29, 2017
A suicide car bomber blew himself up outside a popular ice cream shop in Baghdad — killing at least 13 people and injuring 24 others — after they stopped fasting for Ramadan, officials said.
Dramatic videos posted on social media showed the chaotic scene as families and young ones struggled to find each other following the blast early Tuesday.
“Men, women and children were enjoying ice cream on a hot night when the car bomb went off in central #Baghdad,” tweeted Middle East reporter Haidar Sumeri. “I don’t know what to say.”
In one clip, drivers can be seen cruising down a three-lane road in Baghdad’s central Karrada district just before the bomb goes off outside the at the Al-Faqma ice cream shop.
Giant fireballs and plumes of smoke billow into the night sky as the motorists try to turn around and flee.
The Islamic State later claimed responsibility, saying the bomber had targeted a “gathering of Shiites.”
Iraqi officials told the Agence France-Presse that the suspect had been sitting inside a parked car, which was rigged with explosives.
The attack unfolded just after midnight — as locals were breaking their daily fast for Ramadan, the officials said.
While Muslims are supposed to spend the daylight hours of the holy month abstaining from food, they typically stop doing so and head for their local restaurants and cafes as soon as the sun goes down.
These places are considered by many to be easy targets, especially during Ramadan, which is often marred by violence.
A popular retail district in Baghdad, known for its young people and shoppers, was targeted by ISIS in a truck bombing last year — which left hundreds dead and scores more wounded. It was the single deadliest event in the city since the US invasion in 2003.
The Islamic State also claimed responsibility after Tuesday’s attack.
The footage from the scene shows a number of wounded scattered on the ground — some propped up on benches and others laid out, appearing lifeless — just moments after the blast. Cups of ice cream can be seen strewn across the blood-soaked ground.
At one point, a young girl is spotted walking around in a daze as fires burn and bodies lay all around her.
“ISIS terrorists tonight in Baghdad target children & families enjoying time together at an ice cream shop,” tweeted Brett McGurk, special presidential envoy for the global coalition against ISIS.
“We stand w/Iraq against this evil,” he said.
With Post wires