ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Iraqi Federal Police on Tuesday captured four Islamic State (IS) members and burned three hideouts in a thorough search through parts of northern Iraq where sleeper cells had previously attacked, and security forces suspected members to be hiding.
According to Security Information Center (SIC), an official entity under the authority of the Ministry of Interior, the Federal Police’s fifth and sixth divisions with the aid of Iraqi Air Force undertook the operation in some regions of Kirkuk including Qara Tapa, where IS abducted five including a Peshmerga officer on Sunday.
The SIC mentioned in a statement that one of the captured terrorists was a member of the Abu Huzaifah detachment, while another one security forces had wounded on multiple occasions during the “liberation operations.”
The statement also noted the capture of a third IS member who went by the name Abdulla al-Fatih and a fourth one nicknamed Kasha.
Despite Iraq’s “final victory” declaration in December, IS militants still carry out small-scale attacks in the region as they did on Sunday in an attack south of Kirkuk, killing 12 Iranian-backed Shia Hashd al-Shaabi fighters.
With an increase in terrorist activity in the region, some villagers from Diyala Province are starting to leave their homes to seek safety elsewhere after they fought off an IS attack, losing one person.
Kirkuk and Diyala are provinces in the country which rank second and third for May civilian casualties (excluding Iraqi security forces) after Baghdad, a recent statement by the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) reveals.
According to UNAMI, Diyala was the second hardest hit area with nine killed and 35 more injured followed by Kirkuk with nine dead and 15 wounded.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany