Diyala (IraqiNews.com) An Islamic State leader and one of his companions were killed as clashes broke out between the senior leaders of the group at the region on borders between Diyala and Salahuddin, an official from the pro-government paramilitary troops said.
Speaking to AlSumaria News on Saturday, Jabbar al-Maamouri, a leader with al-Hashd al-Shaabi (Popular Mobilization Forces) said, “We have confirmed news over clashes between the group’s elite leaders in Um al-Sharr in Mutaibija, on borders between Diyala and Salahuddin. One of the leaders and his companion were killed in shootout.”
“Mutaibija has the elite of five of the so-called Islamic State Wilayas (provinces). Each of them tries to dominate the other, which created the conflicts,” Maamouri added.
He also urged necessity to expedite the battle at Um al-Sharr and eliminate presence of the militants there before the group leaders destabilize security at other places.
In November, Maamouri told Alsumaria News that the elite of five IS so-called “wilayas” (provinces) remain in hiding at Mutaibija.
Mutaibija has complicated terrain, with numerous hills that serve as a good hideout for militants. Occasional attacks have been witnessed there by Islamic State against government and paramilitary troops deployments since Iraqi forces, backed by a U.S.-led coalition and PMUs, launched a major offensive to retake areas occupied by IS since 2014.