Perpetrators behind twin deadly suicide bombings at a busy market in the Iraqi capital, Baghdad, on Thursday must be prosecuted, UN Secretary-General António Guterres said in a statement strongly condemning the attacks.
At least 32 people died, and more than 100 were injured, in the blasts, which were carried out that morning by two suicide bombers who detonated their vests at the market in Tayaran Square in the capital, Baghdad.
I strongly condemn the deadly double suicide bombing targeting civilians at a market in Baghdad today.— António Guterres (@antonioguterres) January 21, 2021
I appeal to the people of Iraq to reject any attempts to spread fear & violence & call on the Government to ensure that those behind these crimes are brought to justice.
The last time that the Iraqi capital was hit in a deadly suicide attack, was two years ago, when 35 people were killed, in the same square. No group has yet claimed Thursday’s attack.
The incident comes just a few days after the Iraqi Government announced that it was postponing the general election from 6 June until 10 October, to give authorities more time to register voters and new political parties, according to news reports.
Early elections have been a key demand of anti-government protesters who staged months of mass demonstrations beginning in October 2019.
Reject attempts to ‘spread fear’
The UN chief has expressed his deep condolences to the families of the victims, and to the Government and people of Iraq, his spokesperson said in a statement.
“The Secretary-General appeals to the people of Iraq to reject any attempts to spread fear and violence aimed at undermining peace, stability and unity. He calls on the Government to ensure that those behind these horrific crimes are swiftly identified and brought to justice”, it said.
The Secretary-General underscored UN support to Iraqi authorities, and to the country’s people, in their efforts to consolidate peace