Baghdad, Feb 2: At least 15 militants were killed Saturday when Iraqi security forces hit militants’ positions in restive province of Anbar Saturday, security sources said.
Iraqi helicopter, gunships and artillery bombarded the positions in an industrial area of the province’s Fallujah city, some 50 km from capital Baghdad, killing 15 gunmen, Xinhua quoted Iraqi defence ministry saying in a statement.
The Iraqi security forces backed by allied tribal fighters retook full control of al-Mal’ab district in Anbar’s provincial capital city of Ramadi, some 110 km west of Baghdad, it said.
Meanwhile, fierce clashes were underway in Fallujah between the Iraqi army and local tribal fighters. The army’s artillery bombarded several districts in and near Fallujah, killing and wounding an unknown number of people, a provincial police source said.
Anbar province has been the scene of fierce clashes that flared up after Iraqi police dismantled an anti-government protest site outside Ramadi in late December last year.
Separately, three people were killed and two wounded in three bomb explosions across the predominantly Sunni province of Salahudin in north of Baghdad.
In Baghdad, a roadside bomb detonated in the capital’s southern district of Doura, killing a civilian and wounding five, a police source said.
Meanwhile, five soldiers were wounded in a roadside bomb explosion near their patrol in Tarmiyah area, some 40 north of Baghdad, the source said.
In addition, a soldier was killed and two were wounded when a roadside bomb struck their patrol near the town of Latifiyah, near Baghdad, the source added.
According to the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq, a total of 8,868 Iraqis, including 7,818 civilians and civilian police personnel, were killed in 2013, the highest annual death toll in years.