Ramadan Ends With a Bang as Islamic State Suicide Bomber Explodes Syrian Bakery, Killing 30

An Islamic State suicide bomber blew himself up outside a bakery in the Kurdish northern Syrian province of Hassakeh as Ramadan was ending late Tuesday, killing as many as 30 people and injuring dozens more.

The bomber reportedly arrived to the bakery on a motorcycle and subsequently detonated his explosives outside the establishment in the midst of a crowd of people.

Initial reports suggested that the explosion had claimed 16 fatalities, but according to a Kurdish source, the actual number of dead is “at least thirty.”

Islam’s holy season of Ramadan began on June 5 this year and finished on Tuesday evening. During the month-long celebration, jihadists instigated by the Islamic State have carried out lethal attacks in Orlando, Afghanistan, Kenya, Lebanon, Istanbul, Bangladesh and Syria.

In an online statement, the Islamic State said that one of its members had carried out Tuesday’s attack in Syria, which targeted the militia of the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), which controls most of Hasaka province.

Last year, the YPG seized large sections of territory from the Islamic State in northeastern Syria and has participated in a U.S.-backed offensive against ISIS militants further west near the Turkish border.

The assault captured a key road junction and grain silos overlooking the city last week, targeting the jihadists’ supply line to areas under its control in eastern Syria and neighboring Iraq.

The Pentagon regards the YPG as the most effective fighting force against ISIS on the ground in Syria.

Syria’s civil war has raged since 2011, beginning with anti-government protests before escalating into a full-scale civil war. In the intervening five years, more than 250,000 Syrians have died as a result of the armed conflict.

With numerous opposition factions and Islamic extremist groups fighting government forces in an effort to topple the government of President Bashar Assad, the war has driven more than 11 million people from their homes.

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