More than a dozen members of the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group have been killed and several others captured as Iraqi air forces and government troops launched separate counter-terrorism operations across the crisis-hit Arab country to flush out the last remnants of the extremist outfit.
The second-in-command of Diyala Operations, Lieutenant General Hassan Mohammed, told Arabic-language al-Sumaria television network that nine Daesh Takfiris were killed when Iraqi military aircraft targeted a militant hideout in Hamrin basin, situated 90 kilometers north of Baquba.
Separately, Iraqi Interior Ministry spokesman, Brigadier General Saad Maan, announced in a statement that the 7th Police Emergency Regiment of the Nineveh Police Command arrested 8 Daesh terrorists, whom were wanted under Article 4/1 of the Anti-Terrorism Law, in the eastern part of the strategic northern city of Mosul on Sunday.
Elsewhere in the holy city of Samarra, Iraqi troops killed four Daesh terrorists, including three bombers, during an operation to beef up security.
“Iraqi army fighter jets struck a vehicle belonging to Daesh terrorist as soon as it arrived in Sa’ad al-Khuzeimi region west of Rutba. The airstrike killed a militant and injured three of his comrades. The slain terrorist has been identified as Khalaf al-Alwani,” Iraqi Joint Operations Command (JOC) spokesman Brigadier General Yahya Rasool said.
On Saturday, members of the Iraqi Federal Police killed two Daesh militant commanders, one of them a Chechen national, during a clean-up operation in the oil-rich northern province of Kirkuk.
The media bureau of Iraq’s Joint Operations Command (JOC) said in a statement that the two were killed in Dabba village, adding that security forces also set two militant hideouts on fire and captured ten Takfiri militants.
On June 30, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, who is also the commander-in-chief of Iraqi forces, pledged to hunt down Daesh militants across Iraq after recent attacks and abductions carried out by the terrorist group.
“We will chase the remaining cells of terrorism in their hideouts and we will kill them, we will chase them everywhere, in the mountains and the desert,” Abadi said.
Abadi declared the end of military operations against Daesh in the Arab country on December 9, 2017.
On July 10 that year, the Iraqi prime minister had formally declared victory over Daesh extremists in Mosul, which served as the terrorists’ main urban stronghold in the conflict-ridden Arab country.
In the run-up to Mosul’s liberation, Iraqi army soldiers and volunteer Hashd al-Sha’abi fighters had made sweeping gains against Daesh.
The Iraqi forces took control of eastern Mosul in January 2017 after 100 days of fighting, and launched the battle in the west on February 19 last year.
Daesh began a terror campaign in Iraq in 2014, overrunning vast swathes in lightning attacks.