Tikrit (IraqiNews.com) Relics of fifteen Islamic State members were found in south of Tikrit, Salahuddin province, pro-government paramilitary troops said.
“Troops seized on Sunday a mass grave including relics of fifteen IS militants’ bodies in Sayed Gharib region in Balad town, south of Tikrit, while combing the region,” a statement by the media service of al-Hashd al-Shaabi (Popular Mobilization Forces) said.
“A wide-scale operation was launched earlier on the day with PMFs engaged,” it added.
An earlier statement said joint troops “destroyed on Sunday an IS rest house in al-Rufai’at, west of Balad.”
Col. Saad Mohamed, of Salahuddin Operations Command, said in press remarks previously on Sunday that troops, backed by army jets, “launched a wide-scale operation to follow IS militants in north of Dujail district, south of the province.
The operation, according to Mohamed, targeted “al-Rufai’at, al-Bou’loul, al-Farhatiya and Sayid Gharib, which witness high activity by the militant group.”
The operation comes in less than a week after an attack launched by the group, which targeted a Shiite shrine in Dujail, leaving dozens of casualties among the militants as well as PMFs.
Pivotal regions that link between each of Diyala, Salahuddin and Kirkuk, are still held by the militants which poses threats to the liberated regions. Iraqi troops are urged to prevent the militants infiltration between Salahuddin and Kirkuk provinces, especially the regions stretching along Hamreen mountains and Al-Azeem town.
It’s expected that the Iraqi government will head towards liberating other IS strongholds across Iraq, including in Salahuddin.