ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) - Kurdish Peshmerga forces on Monday arrested and killed a number of Islamic State (IS) militants west of Kirkuk as they were fleeing the besieged city of Hawija.
The jihadists were armed and tried to escape into Kirkuk, Kamal Kirkuki, a Peshmerga Commander in western Kirkuk, told Kurdistan 24.
"Peshmerga forces arrested two Da'esh militants alive," Kirkuk said using the pejorative Arabic acronym. He stated the soldiers killed over five militants as the militants opened fire on the Peshmerga frontline.
He also noted that two of the militants blew themselves, with no casualties on the Peshmerga side.
Iraqi forces on Sep. 21 launched a military operation to retake Hawija and neighboring towns which have been under the control of IS since mid-2014.
On Oct. 5, Iraqi forces announced the liberation of the city's center, but the operation remains ongoing as troops are progressing to the last IS-held town of Riyadh, southeastern Hawija.
Editing by G.H. Renaud