Child suicide bombing foiled in Iraq

A child wearing an explosives belt was stopped and disarmed by Iraqi officials in Kirkuk soon after a suicide explosion at a mosque, authorities said Monday.

The youth, age 12 or 13, was captured Sunday before he could detonate his explosives belt in Kirkuk's Huzairan neighborhood, the Kurdish Rudaw news agency reported. The arrest came about an hour after a suicide bomb outside a Shiite mosque in the Kurdish-controlled city killed a bomber and wounded at least two other people.

The Islamic State claimed responsibility for the mosque bombing. Shortly before the mosque attack, another bomb attack caused no injuries, Rudaw reported.

The captured youth was displaced from Mosul, Iraq's second-largest city, by recent military operations and arrived in Kirkuk a week ago, Kirkuk intelligence official Chato Fadhil Humadi told the Associated Press.

"The boy claimed during interrogation that he had been kidnapped by masked men who put the explosives on him and sent him to the area," Humadi said.

On Saturday, an Islamic State suicide bomber attacked a Kurdish wedding party in southeastern Turkey, killing at least 51 people and wounding scores more. The bombing in Gaziantep, near Turkey's border with Syria, was the deadliest attack in Turkey this year.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Sunday that the wedding bomber was a youth 12 to 14 years old, although on Monday Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said authorities had not determined whether the bomber was an adult or a child.

Kurds have been a key ally in the fight against the Islamic State, and Kurdish forces have driven the militants out of a swath of Kurdish areas in Turkey and Iraq.

Source: Courier-Journal