Iraqi forces kill 42 IS militants in northern Iraq

The Iraqi Counterterrorism Service (CTS) commandos carried out an operation in the province of Nineveh and killed 42 militants of the extremist group Islamic State (IS), the Iraqi army announced on Sunday.

Acting on the basis of intelligence reports, CTS forces, backed by Iraqi and international coalition planes, entered the area of ​​Ayn al-Jahash south of the provincial capital of Nineveh, Mosul, some 400 km north of Baghdad, and have fought fierce clashes with IS militants in the region for two consecutive days, Yahia Rasoul, spokesman for the Iraqi forces commander-in-chief, said in a statement.

The troops forced IS militants to retreat and hide in their hiding places in tunnels and caves, prompting CTS troops to storm their hiding places even with hand grenades, he said. he adds.

The operation resulted in the deaths of 42 IS militants, including five of their local leaders, and the seizure of weapons and ammunition inside hiding places, according to Rasoul.

The operation came as extremist ISIS militants stepped up their attacks on security forces and civilians in former IS-controlled Sunni provinces, leaving dozens dead and injured.

The security situation in Iraq has improved since Iraqi security forces completely defeated ISIS militants across the country in late 2017.

However, the remnants of IS have since melted into urban areas or deserts and hilly areas, carrying out frequent guerrilla attacks against security forces and civilians.

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