A bomb hidden on a motorcycle exploded at a secondhand market in Iraq's capital, the deadliest of a series of bombings Thursday around Baghdad that killed at least 31 people, authorities said.
The motorcycle market blast struck Baghdad's sprawling eastern Sadr City district as night fell, killing at least 22 people and wounding 45, officials said. It appeared as though the motorcycle bomb had been slipped in among the other bikes on display, officials said.
A wounded man, who identified himself as Ahmed, rested in a nearby hospital. "I was about to leave the market when a huge explosion happened," Ahmed told Reuters. "I was hit in my face and my hands and when I got up, everyone was screaming and running towards me away from the blast."
Meanwhile, two other bombs struck across the capital targeting minibuses ferrying home laborers at the end of the workday. In Sadr City, officials said a bomb attached to a minibus exploded, killing five civilians and wounding 14. Another bomb stuck on a minibus killed four and wounded 11 in the northern Shaab neighborhood, authorities said.
A police officer and two medical officials confirmed casualty figures for the attacks. They spoke on condition of anonymity as they weren't authorized to speak to journalists.
No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attacks, but it bore the hallmarks of Sunni armed group members who frequently use car bombs and suicide attacks in their bid to undermine confidence in the Shia-led government. Such bombings have increased along with Sunni anger over perceived mistreatment and random arrests by the government.
Both Sadr City and Shaab are predominantly Shia.
Last year, Iraq saw the highest death toll since 2007 when violence killed nearly 9,000 people, according to the United Nations. Thousands have fled the violence.