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IS executes 32 security personnel in Iraq

IS executes 32 security personnel in Iraq
The 32 young men were shot dead in the morning in Jubba area, just near the town of al-Baghdadi, some 200 km northwest of Iraq’s capital Baghdad, the source told Xinhua news agency on condition of anonymity.

Those executed were believed to be local policemen and members of the government-backed Sahwa paramilitary group. They were captured in a battle with IS militants in Jubba, the source said.

Last month, the IS executed dozens of people, after major attacks on al-Baghdadi and the nearby air base of Ain al-Asad where hundreds of US marines are housed. The IS terrorist group has seized around 80 percent of Iraq’s largest province of Anbar and tried to advance toward Baghdad, but several counter-attacks by security forces and Shia militias have pushed them back.

Since December last year, insurgent attacks have continued in the Sunni Arab heartland west of Baghdad which stretches through the Anbar province. The province has been the scene of fierce clashes since Iraqi police disbanded an anti-government protest outside Ramadi city. The security situation in Iraq started deteriorating drastically since early June last year when bloody clashes broke out between security forces and the IS.

The extremist group has controlled the country’s northern province of Nineveh and seized swathes of territories after Iraqi security forces abandoned their posts in other predominantly Sunni provinces.
Meanwhile, Iraqi security forces have launched a major offensive against Islamic State (IS) militants in the country’s Salahudin province, a security source confirmed on Monday.

The offensive is aimed at recapturing key cities and towns seized by the IS terrorist group in the province in central north Iraq. More than 30,000 Iraqi soldiers, policemen and allied Sunni and Shia militiamen are taking part in the offensive.

They launched the campaign from five routes: two from Mkesheifa and Sur Shnas south of Tikrit, the provincial capital about 170 km north of Baghdad, two others from Udheim and Tuz Khurmato east of Tikrit, and one more from Speicher airbase, just north of Tikrit, a provincial security source told Xinhua news agency on condition of anonymity. The troops, backed by armoured vehicles and aircraft, have retaken control of several villages after heavy clashes with IS militants north of Samarra, some 120 km north of Baghdad, the source said. Efforts were continuing to liberate Tikrit, the source said.

Late on Sunday, PM Haider al-Abadi, who serves as commander-in-chief of the Iraqi armed forces, announced the commencement of the offensive during a surprise visit to Samarra.
Agencies

Agencies

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