Clashes with and air raids against ISIS insurgents in Iraq on Thursday resulted in the deaths of at least three members and the destruction of a hideout of the terrorist organization in two different parts of the country.
Earlier in the day, sleeper cells of the group attacked an Iraqi security checkpoint outside the capital of Baghdad, a statement by the country’s military communications center said. The attack resulted in the death of one member of the security forces and injured five others.
“During this confrontation, two IEDs exploded, killing one associate and injuring five others,” the Security Media Cell said.
Iranian-backed Hashd al-Shaabi militias, also known as the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF), said the same day, they killed three alleged Islamic State fighters in an “ambush.”
The operation reportedly took place in the disputed Kirkuk Province, in a rural area known as Tel Gul, roughly 210 kilometers north of the capital.
On the same day, the international anti-Islamic State coalition carried out an air raid on tunnels in the Nineveh “deserts,” the ministry of defense said. The number of casualties from this operation was not immediately apparent.
Last week, the military said a clash with Islamic State remnants in Kirkuk’s Hawija district left two Iraqi security forces dead and three others injured.
Despite Iraq having declared a military victory over the Islamic State in 2017, the extremist group continues to launch sporadic attacks in areas formerly under its control and even in regions it never occupied, like the Iraqi capital of Baghdad, Kurdistan 24 reported.
Regional instability has also emboldened the Islamic State, with senior leaders in the Kurdistan Region as well as foreign officials warning of a possible re-emergence if the root causes which led to the group’s emergence are left unaddressed.