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Iraqis at Karrada: Security Checkpoints Are Stupid and Our Government is a Failure | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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People gather at the site of a suicide car bomb in the Karrada shopping area, in Baghdad, Iraq July 3, 2016. REUTERS/Khalid al Mousily

Baghdad–Iraqi government has declared three days of national mourning after a huge bomb in Karrada neighborhood of Baghdad killed 165 people and injured 225 others last Sunday.

The terrorist attack is considered one of the deadliest to target Iraq and happened one week after Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) recaptured Fallujah from ISIS control.

ISIS claimed responsibility for the car packed with explosives that detonated in Karrada while citizens were shopping for Eid Al-Fitr. According to ISIS, the operation was executed by Abu Maha al-Iraqi.

Social network activists posted videos of angry Iraqis attacking the convoy of Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi and throwing stones towards him while he was inspecting the explosion site.

Abadi later announced the three days of mourning, adding that he understood the angry reaction of residents.

PM Abadi also declared increased security measures and ordered that improved vehicle inspection systems be installed at entry points into Baghdad and in other provinces.

Om Ala’a, one of the citizens whose apartment was burnt by the explosion, said: “I swear our governmental is a failure.”

A bystander wondered why the government’s tactics remain the same while ISIS’ tactics are changing. He criticized the security measures used at checkpoints, describing them as “stupid”.

A former soldier, Hussein said that six employees who work at his family’s warehouse were burnt beyond recognition. He added: “I will join the battles again. At least out there in the field I know my enemy and can fight them. But here, I don’t know whom should I fight.”