No group has claimed responsibility but Iraqi officials warned the group "Islamic State" (IS) has become increasingly desperate as it loses ground. Previous attacks have targeted civilian areas.
At least forty people were killed and a further 60 were wounded following twin explosions in downtown Baghdad, police and medical sources told German news agency DPA on Saturday. The double car bomb attack took place just before midnight on Friday near the popular Nakheel shopping mall.
No one has yet claimed responsibility for the attack, but officials have warned that as IS fighters lost ground in Iraq and Syria, they were likely to carry out many smaller-scale terror attacks on civilians.
The first blast came from a parked car, authorities said, followed by an explosives-laden vehicle driven by a suicide bomber. An interior ministry spokesman said that none of the victims had been inside the mall but outside in the busy neighborhood surrounding it.
Reports of casualties varied according to the different sources immediately after the blasts. Doctors from the local hospital said they expected the death toll to rise further.
Last Tuesday, IS carried out a similar attack near a hospital in the bustling Karrada district, killing seven people. Karrada was also the site of the Iraqi capital's deadliest-ever single bombing, which claimed the lives of 300 people in July.
es/jm (dpa, AFP, Reuters)