Foreign Minister Børge Brende has condemned the terrorist attack in Baghdad over the weekend in the strongest of terms. It has been deemed the worst single attack in Iraq since 2007.
As the death toll rose on Monday, to more than 200 killed including entire families that were wiped out, Brende didn’t mince words in his condemnation. “It’s especially disgusting that the terrorist act took place in an area and at a time when civilian Iraqis were gathering to break their fast under the holy month of Ramadan,” Børge said. “My thoughts and condolences go to the many families who were killed and injured.”
The brutal terrorist organization ISIL has claimed to have been behind the attack that targeted other Muslims, prompting one Oslo terror expert to note that it defied everything Ramadan stands for. Lars Gule of the College of Oslo and Akershus said there was “no doubt” that “the fanatics” want to show that they want to tie violence to Islam, to show that they want to fight for their religions. Ramadan, he said, is traditionally a time to show humility and mercy, take care of the needy, make sacrifices and take time for personal reflection.
Brende, who also condemned an earlier terrorist attack in Dhaka, Bangladesh during the weekend that killed 20 people, said Norway would continue to take active part in the fight against ISIL along with the Iraqi government “and the rest of the international community.”
The Iraqi Embassy in Oslo laid out a Book of Condolence on Monday and Tuesday, with Ambassador Sundus Omar Ali Albayraqdar stating that the “horrific train of continued nightmares has to end. We should triumph over terror and evil,” adding that the “Cradle of Civilization will bounce back.”