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IS Attacks Troops in Western Iraq, Killing 11

  • VOA News

FILE - A burnt vehicle belonging to the Iraqi security forces is seen on the outskirt of Haditha, northwest of Baghdad August 26, 2014. On Monday, Jan. 4, 2016, IS militants attacked Iraqi troops and allied tribal fighters outside Haditha, killing at least 11 and wounding dozens.

Islamic State militants attacked Iraqi troops and allied tribal fighters outside the western town of Haditha on Monday, killing at least 11 and wounding dozens, officials said.

The Associated Press reported that 30 troops were wounded in the attacks, which included a suicide car bombing and roadside bombs.

The attack comes a week after Iraqi troops backed by U.S.-led airstrikes and Sunni tribesmen pushed IS out of central Ramadi, capital of sprawling Anbar province, which also includes Haditha.

Pockets of IS fighters remain to the east and north of the city and have launched daily counterattacks against Iraqi military positions, mostly using suicide car bombs.

The United States and its allies conducted 25 strikes against Islamic State militants in Iraq on Sunday.

The Combined Joint Task Force, the coalition leading the operations, said the strikes were staged near nine Iraqi cities, including Fallujah, Kisik, Mosul, Ramadi and Sinjar, and hit 10 of the militant group's tactical units.

Meanwhile, blasts rocked two Sunni mosques in central Iraq Monday amid fears of renewed sectarian strife following Saudi Arabia's execution of a prominent Shiite cleric.

As thousands demonstrated against the Saudi monarchy in Baghdad, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi vowed to track down the attackers, who he said were attempting to undermine national unity.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the blasts.