Iraqi Warplane Accidentally Bombs Baghdad

Iraqi Warplane Accidentally Bombs BaghdadIraqi Warplane Accidentally Bombs Baghdad

An Iraqi warplane has accidentally dropped a bomb over a residential area of Baghdad after it experienced mechanical failure, according to the country's defense ministry.

Officials confirmed to Al Jazeera on Monday that a bomb fell from a Russian-made Sukhoi Su-25 fighter jet, hitting the New Baghdad neighborhood of the city and leaving 25 people killed or wounded.

Early reports suggested at least seven of the casualties had been killed. Three children and two women were among those killed; at least 25 others were wounded.

"One of the bombs became stuck because of a technical problem, and during its [the aircraft's] return to base it fell on three houses in Baghdad Jadida," security spokesman Brigadier General Saad Maan said in a statement.

The jet was coming back from a bombing run when the accident occurred, Maan said.

Iraq received Sukhoi Su-25 jets from Russia and Iran last year as it sought to bolster its fledgling air force to combat the Islamic State group, which has seized large parts of the country.

The US agreed to sell Iraq 36 F-16 warplanes, but none have been delivered so far. The first batch of the jets has instead been sent to Arizona, where Iraqi F-16 pilots are training.

The Su-25s are robust aircraft designed for ground attack missions, but Iraq's Sukhoi fleet is made up of ageing planes that have seen heavy use as Baghdad's forces battle to push the jihadists back.

One of pilots was killed in a crash during an aerial refueling exercise at the end of June.

It is understood the pilots had noticed a problem with one of the bombs it was carrying and were returning to their base when the deadly missile came loose, falling from the aircraft on to the Jadida area of the Iraqi capital.