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US Kills 2 'High Value Individuals' in Attack on IS

FILE - In this Aug. 10, 2014, file photo, an aircraft lands after missions targeting the Islamic State group in Iraq from the deck of the U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush in the Persian Gulf.

A U.S. airstrike has killed two "high-value individuals" in an attack on an Islamic State building in Iraq.

Baghdad-based military spokesman Colonel Steve Warren said Wednesday that the May 13 strike killed Abu Hamza and Abu Safiya, as well as a third militant.

Warren said Abu Hamza, a former member of al-Qaida in Iraq, planned and conducted attacks against Americans during the war in Iraq that ended in 2011.

He said Abu Hamza was also responsible for coordinating Islamic State fighters, reinforcements and finances in Iraq.

Abu Safiya is blamed for staging chemical weapons attacks in Iraq's Euphrates River Valley.

Warren said overall the United States has targeted and killed more than 120 high-value fighters in Islamic State since the start of 2015.

But he said in recent days Islamic State fighters have claimed responsibility for a string of attacks in and around Baghdad that have killed more than 140 people in the past week.

VOA National Security Correspondent Jeff Seldin contributed to this report.