BAGHDAD (AP) — An Iraqi fighter jet accidentally dropped a bomb over a Baghdad neighborhood on Monday, killing at least 12 people on the ground, Iraqi officials said.
The plane — one of several Russian-made Sukhois used by Iraq in the fight against the Islamic State group — was returning to base when the accident happened.
Military spokesman Brig. Gen. Saad Maan Ibrahim told The Associated Press that a technical failure caused the Sukhoi jet to drop the bomb, which hit a number of houses in the Iraqi capital’s eastern neighborhood of New Baghdad.
Three children and two women were among the 12 killed, a police officer at the scene and a medical official at a nearby hospital said. At least 25 people were wounded, the two officials added.
AP footage showed rescue teams in orange jumpsuits and blue helmets searching through the rubble for victims. At least one victim was seen wrapped with a blanket and being rushed to an ambulance.
Iraq is going through its worst crisis since the 2011 withdrawal of U.S. troops. The Islamic State group controls large swaths of the country’s north and west following a blitz last year when the militants captured Iraq’s second-largest city of Mosul and the majority of the western Anbar province.
Also Monday, separate attacks in and around Baghdad killed at least seven people.
The deadliest took place in Baghdad’s southern suburb of Arab Jabour when a booby-trapped house exploded, killing three members of security forces and wounding nine, a police officer said.
In another attack, two soldiers were killed and five hurt when mortar rounds hit their base in Abu Ghraib, west of Baghdad, the officer said. And two civilians were killed and six wounded in a bomb explosion at an outdoor market in the western Ghazaliyah neighborhood.
Medical officials confirmed casualty figures. All officials spoke on condition of anonymity as they were not authorized to release information.
Associated Press writer Murtada Faraj in Baghdad contributed to this report.