Salahuddin (IraqiNews.com) Three Islamic State militants were killed Thursday while a fourth was arrested while trying to plant bombs targeting paramilitary forces at Salahuddin-Diyala borders.
Mahdi Taqi, a member at the security committee at Salahuddin province, said three militants were killed and a fourth was attested, while an explosive device was neutralized in a “preemptive operation” by al-Hashd al-Shaabi (Popular Mobilization Units) in Kifri, a region on the borders with Diyala. He said the militants were killed while planting landmines targeting the forces.
Meanwhile, an official in Diyala said IS began to detonate civilian homes o prevent the return of refugees at the borders with Salahuddin.
Udai al-Kahdran, mayor of al-Khales (15 km north of Baqubah), said in a press statement that Islamic State members began, days earlier, to blow up civilian houses at Boujanaan, Boujomaa and Hathal al-Mutlak border villages. He said the action comes as part of IS attempts to prevent refugees’ repatriation and to blame the damage on Iraqi forces.
Khadran reiterated that the borders between Salahuddin and Diyala continue to pose a security challenge that requires military action to eliminate the group’s pockets at the abandoned villages.
The Iraqi government is expected to launch offensives at IS havens across Iraq once finished with its operation in Mosul, IS’s largest bastion in Iraq.